London

RMT Tube staff vote for strike action over centre move

Tube trains sit at a depot in Morden, south London
Image caption Union members want to join Transport for London's pension scheme

Tube staff have voted for industrial action over a plan to move control centre employees from Piccadilly to Hammersmith.

The RMT union claimed its staff have voted overwhelmingly for strike action and action short of a strike, citing disagreements over jobs and conditions.

Among their disputes are staffing cuts for Service Control on the Jubilee Line and a disagreement on pay.

TfL pointed out the changes were not due until 2017.

But RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said: "This group of workers are absolutely key to delivering the service on the Piccadilly Line and the way they have been treated by the management at a time when the system is under intense pressure is nothing short of shocking.

"These are the same key staff who keep services running when demand is at a peak and they are the same staff who manage the problems when the lines are hit by breakdowns and failures.

"They deserve respect for the job that they do and not the imposition of inferior working conditions and the threat to jobs."

Nigel Holness, London Underground's operations director, said: "Less than 30% of RMT members balloted were in favour of industrial action.

"We have been in discussion with the unions across the entire Tube network since 2007 on the impact of changes arising from our upgrading of signalling systems.

"We have already addressed nearly all of the issues raised by the RMT and I would urge the RMT leadership to continue working with us to help staff prepare for these changes."

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