RMT ballots members over Transport for Wales strike action
Members of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers employed by Transport for Wales are to be balloted over strike action after rejecting the company’s latest pay offer.
The RMT has been involved in a series of strikes with up to 14 rail operators in a dispute over pay and conditions since early summer but although TfW services have been disrupted as a knock on effect from the disruption caused elsewhere, it hasn’t been directly involved in the industrial action to date.
Talks between the two sides broke down last month after the union’s negotiators rejected what they described as a “divisive” offer that proposed an uplift of 4.5% for all grades with an additional increase to 6.5% for Fleet, Stations, Clerical Grades and 6.6% for Guards and Drivers if a number of “productivity proposals” are accepted.
Mick Lynch, the RMT’s General Secretary has confirmed that a dispute situation now exists between TfW and the union and said preparations for an immediate vote are underway with members be balloted over strike action and a ban on rest day and overtime working.
Industrial action involving the RMT, ASLEF and TSSA unions has resulted in major disruption for operators serving Wales including Great Western Railway, Avanti West Coast and Cross-Country trains in recent months.
TfW was forced to suspend the majority of services due to the most recent industrial action on 1 October and 8 October due to strike action by Network Rail staff who run trains on much of the network.
Transport for Wales was set up by Welsh Government in 2016 to oversee public transport in Wales and in 2021 Transport for Wales group was created as a wholly owned not-for-profit company by the government to take over the running of the Wales and Borders rail network from KeolisAmey.
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Until we as a Country, start paying workers enough to live on. strikes are inevitable! What other option in the current climate do they have? It certainly is not because of lack of money when you look at Directors and shareholders payouts , and the enormous profits these Companies are making right now.
I don’t think that rail companies are making significant profits, if at all, but that alone is no excuse to treat workers badly. Their lower paid grades especially are being driven to benefits and foodbanks which doesn’t reflect well on their conditions of service. Rail companies are anomalies anyway as they are arms length businesses running a pseudo privatised enterprise with government money topping up their revenues i.e they all get paid to provide services which would cost users a damn sight more if those subsidies weren’t paid. The market economy in the UK and possibly most of the western… Read more »
Most of the railway companies operating on the UK system are subsidies of overseas state owned organisations. The only true passenger transport shareholder business is FirstGroup and National Express. (the later doesn’t run domestic railways). FirstGroup has only paid its first dividend since 2013 and that is around 1%. Arriva, Stagecoach and Go-Ahead are now overseas owned. TRW has a staff shortage and is underfunded as the Welsh government under the direct financial control of the UK at Westminster can only allocate resources to its budget. If the RMT, ASLEF and TSSA unions want Wales to be able to pay… Read more »