Rail workers’ union backs solution to labour dispute with ScotRail
THE SUMMER OF STRIKES over driver-only operated trains is set to come to an end after a deal was reached yesterday [20 September] between rail workers and corporation bosses.
RMT claimed victory in the negotiations after a series of strikes put pressure on management to provide guarantees on the future of train safety.
The union will now propose that its membership support the deal, which includes a place for conductors on key routes.
Writing to members about the deal, RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “This agreement has been reached as a result of your determination to fight to protect your hard won terms and conditions and just as importantly your role within the industry. This is more than just a victory for Scotrail it is a victory for the defence of the Role of the Guard and a step forward in our continuing campaign against Driver Only Operation. This agreement will be welcomed by passengers and members alike.
“This principal agreement applies to ScotRail EMU services that will operate on the following newly electrified routes: Edinburgh to Glasgow via Falkirk High; Edinburgh to Glasgow via Shotts; Edinburgh to Dunblane; Glasgow to Stirling, Dunblane and Alloa and Glasgow to Edinburgh Waverley via Falkirk Grahamston.”
“This agreement guarantees a guard on every new electrified train and that the conductor will retain their full competency (rules, track safety, evacuation). In addition Scotrail confirm that trains operating these services will not run without a competent conductor on board,” he added.
Phil Vester, head of the ScotRail Alliance, has also welcomed the agreement – describing the outcome as a “win-win” deal.
ScotRail planned a private dinner last night [Tuesday 20 September] to bring together the corporation’s management and SNP MSPs.
Verster, describing the get-together at MacDonald Holyrood Hotel, wrote: “John Mason MSP has kindly agreed to host the evening which will provide an opportunity for you to meet me and some of the senior leadership team in Scotland and discuss our aspirations and plans for transforming Scotland’s railways as well as any constituency related issues you may have.”
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