Our Ref: BR1/14/3
21st May 2020
FURLOUGH ARRANGEMENTS, CORONAVIRUS – STM (ARRIVA RAIL LONDON)
I write further to my previous correspondence dated 6th April 2020 and in relation to the above matter. As you are aware the furlough arrangement for you and your colleagues employed by STM on the Arriva Rail London (ARL) Contract came to an end on the 18th of May 2020. You will also be aware that your union was instrumental in ensuring that Arriva Rail London committed to the additional 20% and securing 100% pay whilst on furlough.
I understand that a number of you will have concerns should you find yourself, or already find yourself, in a situation where you need to self isolate or shield to protect family members. STM has advised that members who fall into these categories should report as sick and will be entitled to the statutory sick pay. However, your union has written to STM seeking confirmation that the company will adhere to the terms of the RICF (Rail Industry Coronavirus Forum) emergency working principles. This would mean STM would apply sick pay at 80% of your basic rate of pay. Unfortunately, STM has yet to respond to our request.
This issue was also raised with ARL, who committed to providing a top up of 20% to ensure you continue to receive 100% of your pay whilst off work due to the Coronavirus shielding or self isolation measures. These payments would be provided in the same way as the furlough arrangement. Therefore, whilst we need to wait for confirmation from STM, should they fail to apply the RICF principles, we will raise this issue with ARL to immediately ask them to intervene and apply pressure to STM to ensure the correct procedures are in place.
Your union is also aware that a number of you have returned to work, with some members working in customer service or alternative roles. The union has received assurances that you and your colleagues will be provided with safe working measures no less than that of the directly employed ARL members. You should have also received the relevant risk assessments and covid-19 advice. The union has produced a document to assist members during this pandemic and I would advise members to read this carefully. Should you have any concerns regarding, health, safety or working conditions make sure you report this to your local representative and union.
The union document can be found HERE.
The National Executive Committee has considered this matter and noted the current situation and has instructed me to continue to pursue these issues as outlined above. I will continue to keep the NEC and you and your colleagues updated on further developments as and when they arise.
In the meantime I hope you and your family are keeping safe and well during this unprecedented time.