London tube strikes

Tube workers to take industrial action over violence

Workers on parts of London Underground have voted for industrial action over claims they face increased levels of violence and anti-social behaviour.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union on the eastern end of the District Line will only work from a place of safety from the end of the month when lone-working and will not attend incidents on trains by themselves.

The union said a female member of staff was attacked in her office by a passenger and others have been threatened.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: "There has been an explosion of violent crime and sexual offences across the network and our members are bearing the brunt of it, particularly on the District Line."

A Transport for London spokesman said: "Our staff work hard to assist our customers and keep London moving. They deserve to go about their day without fear or intimidation, in safety.

"We have met with the RMT to reiterate our commitment to ensuring the safety of our staff and outline the steps we have taken to address their feedback.

"We will continue to engage with them to ensure all staff feel safe and secure while performing their duties."

BA pilots and Tube workers start voting on strike action

British Airways pilots and London Underground workers start voting on Wednesday on whether to strike in separate disputes over jobs and pay which threatens travel disruption later in the summer.

Members of the British Airline Pilots Association (Balpa) and Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) will vote in the next few weeks on whether to launch campaigns of industrial action.

Balpa general secretary Brian Strutton said three unions representing 40,000 BA workers have been trying to negotiate a pay deal.

While around 2,000 RMT members on LU are being balloted in a dispute over union claims that job losses are being planned as part of a so-called transformation programme.

The ballot will involve engineering, signals, electrical, track and control centre staff.

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RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: "Staff across London Underground are furious at the attempts to smuggle in a creeping programme of cuts and privatisation under the cloak of the Transformation Programme and we will begin balloting nearly 2,000 staff at the sharp end of the plans this week.

"RMT on London Underground is now on a war footing and it's about time the management, and the London Mayor, woke up and took notice. If we are forced by their inaction to escalate the dispute then that is exactly we will do."

A Transport for London spokesman said: "Over the next three years we will continue to reduce our operating costs whilst delivering improvements to our service, and we are consulting fully with our staff and trade unions before any changes are confirmed.

"None of this will compromise the safety of customers or staff, which will always remain our top priority. We hope that the RMT will engage with us in this consultation process."

The results of both ballots will be announced next month.

Talks to resume on Tube workers' pay

Tube strike
PA

Talks aimed at achieving a pay deal for thousands of London Underground workers will resume today amid union claims that staff are facing growing workloads and pressures.

The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union said the latest offer from the company excludes 1,300 workers previously employed by Tube Lines, and does not address demands for a shorter working week.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said: "The company, the Mayor and his senior officials all need to be aware that RMT will fight for a fair deal for London's Tube workers that reflects their massive contribution to the wealth of the City.

"A failure to come up with a deal that meets that objective will result in action by this trade union.

"It is, frankly, bizarre that the current offer, which fails to address key issues like pay for the lower grades, reduction in the working week and equality of transport provision, was received by post rather than face to face.

"I also want to make it clear that RMT will not tolerate any attempts to marginalise and exclude the 1,300 former Tube Lines staff."

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Talks to be held to avoid FA Cup Tube strike

Tube strike
PA

Talks are to be held in a bid to avert a strike by London Underground workers over the weekend of the FA Cup Final in a dispute over safety.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union are set to walk out for three days on 17 May, the day before the showpiece game at Wembley Stadium between Manchester City and Watford.

Thousands of fans would be hit by any disruption to Tube services.

The union has accused London Underground of cutting train preparations, inspections and maintenance which it says threatens safety - however London Underground denies the claims.

Talks between the two sides will be held at the conciliation service Acas on Friday.

The union is planning to hold a protest at City Hall next week urging London mayor Sadiq Khan to intervene.

The RMT said around 1,000 of its members, working on maintenance and other areas, are involved in the row.