Our Ref: HSR/1/3
Head Office Circular NP/276/20
3rd November 2020
ALL REGIONAL COUNCILS
REINTRODUCTION OF ONBOARD REVENUE NORTHERN TRAINS LTD
Leeds City Branch has submitted the following resolution for the attention of the National Executive Committee (NEC):
During the pandemic NTL have been very proactive to putting control measures in place to protect our members against Covid 19 infection in line with this union’s policy. Leeds City Branch makes note of the reintroduction of onboard revenue duties on Northern Trains Limited. This branch deems it unacceptable for this to occur during the ongoing pandemic with reference to rising numbers of infection in Yorkshire and the North West of England. At the time of writing infection rates at Leeds are now rising with 4 confirmed Covid 19 Infections in one week in the booking office/on train accountancy point and the train crew management team who share the same building. The lack of any system to monitor case numbers by NTL and no negotiation taking place via the working group overseeing the reintroduction is not in keeping with requests by the RMT to keep our members safe. This branch takes note of the need to collect revenue to protect jobs, keep key workers moving during the pandemic and to provide financial protection should a second lockdown occur.
We ask the NEC to instruct the General Secretary to then instruct the full-time officer of Northern Trains Limited to suspend the RMT's support for onboard revenue duties until the following has been implemented.
1) A comprehensive system of monitoring infection rates in areas that the company operates services is put in place.
2) An agreed threshold that identifies when case numbers become too high onboard revenue will cease until case numbers return to under that level.
3) Request NTL to work with the authorities to increase the patrols of Travel Safe Officers and British Transport Police in and around major stations to monitor and enforce the wearing of face coverings in line with the law.
4) NTL to reintroduce their essential travel only message to passengers rather than the current travel safe message which is being ignored by the current travelling public.
5) Ensure Schools and Higher Education establishments over the NTL network are aware of what is expected of their students whilst using the rail system, this would be in respect of Social Distancing, wearing of face coverings, payments by contactless wherever possible, purchasing of tickets before boarding where facilities are provided and to keep nonessential travel to a minimum.
This branch believes all the above are reasonable requests to ensure the protection of our members and the travelling public as far as reasonably practicable against Covid 19 whilst using Northern Trains Limited services.
On considering this resolution the NEC noted and adopted the following report of their Health and Safety Sub-committee:
We note the resolution from Leeds City Branch. On consideration of this matter we believe these issues are wider than that covered by Leeds City Branch. The General Secretary is instructed to obtain an urgent report from the Lead Officer on the implications across the entire Northern Trains network. The report to be placed back in front of this National Executive Committee as soon as it is received.
Branches and Regional Councils to be advised.
Northern Trains Limited members to be advised via email and text.
I am acting in accordance with these instructions and will keep you advised of developments.