Our Ref: HC/14/2
15th October 2020
REINTRODUCTION OF ON BOARD CATERING SERVICES ELIOR (SOUTH WESTERN RAILWAY CONTRACT)
I have received concerning reports from our lead officer regarding the reintroduction of catering across the South Western Railway network. The company are currently under the direction of the DfT for the next 6 months and SWR are awaiting a decision from the DfT on whether catering services will resume. I understand that this is an incredibly distressing time for you and your colleagues working for Elior. It is shameful that you are currently being left in the dark on when you will be able to return to work.
The matter has been considered by the National Executive Committee who has acknowledged the report from our Lead Officer. As instructed by the NEC I will be writing to SWR to seek assurances from them and to demand that they find alternative employment on the network, should catering services not resume. I have reminded SWR of their obligations to their employees, whether they are subcontracted or not, and that it would be unfair and immoral to leave you with no source of income because of the global pandemic.
I will also be raising this issue with our parliamentary group and will be placing increased pressure on the DfT to find support for subcontracted companies supplying on board services across the whole of the rail industry.
I am disappointed that I am unable to write to you all in more positive terms. However, please be aware that the union will do everything possible to resolve this issue and ensure that you and your colleagues are protected during this difficult time. I will continue to keep you updated as matters progress.