Train strikes, ahead in the new year, the rail workers plan a series of 24-hour walkouts in a long line of over the role of guards.
RMT members to five operators to walk up 8, 10 and 12 January. Workers in the South will strike on January 8th.
The five were involved, the South Western Railway (SWR), Greater Anglia, Merseyrail, Northern and the Isle of Wight, Island Line managed by the SWR.
Northern rail said it would keep the customers moving.
Greater Anglia said it would run a full-service, all-day strike.
Controversy ‘in security’
Govia Thameslink (GTR), in the South of the parent company, said the RMT strikes on the same day, the operator had invited the union for talks.
The union has said that it has received the letter inviting them to talks on Wednesday – after the decision had been made to the industrial phase of the action.
GTR HR director, Andy Bindon, said: “We ask them to call off the strike and come to the negotiating table, as we have suggested on many occasions.”
Andy Heath, managing director of Merseyrail said: “I would like to make our passengers aware that we make every effort to reach an agreement with the RMT and have offered to meet with them without preconditions, in an attempt to resolve this dispute – something that they are not willing to do.”
The RMT has said that it was prepared to meet “real” talk, and Merseyrail, the affirmation that the union does not meet the operator was “junk”.
The operator SWR has not yet commented to the BBC.
The union said it had tried to resolve the bitter row over driver operation (DOO) of trains, and he insisted that the dispute about the safety of the system.
What are driver only operated trains?
General secretary Mick Cash said: “Every single effort that RMT has made to achieve negotiated settlements in these separate disputes with the operating companies of the train on safe operation and safety of the staff was kicked back in his face.
“We are left with no option, but to confirm a further phase of industrial action in the new year.”Offer state’
He added: “it is frankly ridiculous that we were able to negotiate long-term arrangements in Scotland and Wales, protect the guards and the safety of the passengers, but we were denied the same opportunity with rail companies in England.”
He said that the RMT was “ready for talks” in each of the disputes.
Both the North and the Great man said, who had secured the conductors’ jobs by the end of the franchise in 2025.
Richard Dean, Greater Anglia trains, service delivery director said: “We are keeping our conductors on our trains. In fact, we will be recruiting more.”
Richard Allan, the deputy director general of the North, he added that the government last week had written to the union to ensure a place of work for conductors beyond 2025 if the RMT have closed the dispute.
However, the RMT has said that the guarantee of jobs is not the problem. A member of the union told the BBC: “The issue is about the role of the guard and the guarantee of safety, according to a key member of the staff, and the push-to-DOO on more trains.””Backward-looking action’
A spokesman for the Department for Transport confirmed that the offer had been made and said: “it is total nonsense to suggest these strikes are the places of work or safety, the employees have guaranteed jobs and wages.
“In fact, South of the railroad, where these changes have already been introduced, there are now more staff on the trains.
“And the independent rail regulator said driver-controlled trains, which have been used in this country for more than 30 years, are safe.”
He added: “Not content with trying to prevent people to go home for Christmas, the RMT version of a happy new year is to continue to drag paying customers in your useless and backward-looking industrial action.
“Despite this, the companies of the rail transport of hard work to keep the people moving on RMT strike days.”
Paul Plummer, chief executive of the rail Delivery Group, said: “Nobody wins by RMT strike action.”
He said: “Working together, we have to find a way through this dispute, so that we can go forward with the business.”