Our Ref: HSR/2/7
Head Office Circular: NP/320/21
25th August 2021
To: The Secretary
THE CONTINUED IMPOSITION OF FORCED MASK WEARING AND INVASIVE TESTING BY LONDON UNDERGROUND
Your Hammersmith and City Branch submitted the following resolution:
This Union notes the continued imposition of forced mask wearing and invasive testing by London Underground with Instructors and Trainees for in-cab training. Particularly affected are four members of this Branch who are IO Grade Members from Hammersmith Train-Crew Depot.
This is despite the legal requirement for social distancing and mask wearing being dropped a month ago.
We believe this is a detriment to our Members basic human rights and the fact that RMT are endorsing and even insisting on these measures remaining, is turning this Union into nothing short of a dictatorship.
We call upon the NEC to write to the Company that these measures should now be voluntary. We agree that if either party (Trainee/Trainer) is of differing views to the precautions, then they should not be training in-cab together. But if both parties do not want the testing or mask they should not be forced to do so.
It is a disgrace that our members from Hammersmith are having their employment being threatened by them resisting invasive testing and mask wearing, when there is no legal requirement to do so.
Invasive testing under the guise of COVID is a slippery slope. Once management succeed in making this compulsory, as is the case here, this sets a dangerous precedent for the future.
At its meeting on 19th August, 2021, your National Executive Committee noted and adopted the following report from its Health and Safety Sub-committee:
We note the resolution from our Hammersmith and City Branch. However, this NEC believes the health and safety of our membership outweighs the abandoning of the continued use of face masks, social distancing and Covid testing.
We further find it completely unacceptable that people are being threatened with effective demotion (losing around three thousand pounds a year).
The General Secretary is instructed to arrange a meeting with management to find a solution to this which safeguards the status and finances of our members.
The General Secretary is further instructed to write to the Branch informing it of the NEC’s rejection of the Branch’s resolution on this basis.
I am acting in accordance with these instructions and will keep members advised of any developments.
Please bring the contents of this circular to the attention of relevant members.