To All Conductors, Conductor Instructors and Drivers
‘Talking Costs Nothing’
Role of the Guard & Extension of DOO – Arriva Rail North
In my correspondence dated 9th August 2018 I advised you of the National Executive Committee’s decision to call further strike action as a result of Northern’s lack of genuine discussions with your representatives and their complete lack of respect.
Obviously I wrote to the company on the same date advising them of the further action called and lo and behold I have received a letter from them seeking further discussions. They have told you that ‘talking costs nothing’ and we agree. We have been trying to resolve this dispute through discussion for well over a year now.
The company has now written to us requesting we enter in to talks under the auspices of ACAS and that we continue talks at the steering group. They have stated this is a genuine opportunity to talk through topics and options in detail but then ask us to call off the planned strike action.
The National Executive Committee has considered the matter and agree that the talks should go ahead. However, they believe that the last negotiations were, as I explained previously, disingenuous and the company were in fact playing for time.
These talks will need to be meaningful and meet our aspirations and objectives to retain a safety critical guard on every train. The National Executive Committee is prepared to review their decision on strike action depending on how the talks progress but are not prepared to call off the current action. After all Northern make these promises of ‘meaningful’ discussions and then treat your negotiators with contempt.
Talking indeed costs nothing. The talking we want, but we also demand concrete acceptable proposals, not empty words
The ball is now firmly in managements court and we look forward to urgent discussions.