Our Ref: BR2/0146
7th February 2018
ROLE OF THE GUARD & EXTENSION OF DOO – GREATER ANGLIA
I am writing further to my previous letter dated 19th January 2018, you will no doubt be aware that your union has had further meetings with Greater Anglia management about their plans to introduce Driver Only Operation. I can confirm that two meetings have taken place, with the most recent meeting taking place on Monday 5th February, with the union being represented by myself (General Secretary), Steve Smart (Lead Officer), Company Council Representatives Peter Duly and Stuart McDermott and the company being represented by Katy Bucknell, Richard Dean and Phil Wonas.
It is fair to say that these discussions have been frustrating with the company on the one hand saying they are going to have a conductor on their trains, but, when we ask the company to provide a clear written commitment to back up what they are saying in these meetings, the company become evasive and we hit the problems. During these discussions we have made it clear that we are seeking a deal that is both beneficial to our members and the passengers on Greater Anglia and we are not interesting in discussing any other Train Operating Companies position.
Our discussions have currently hit a stumbling block, which means that talks have now been adjourned and a new date is set to be arranged. It is clear to your union that we need to keep up the pressure on the company, who might be using the fact that by law we have to re-ballot you and your colleagues and are stalling in the hope that you will not keep backing the campaign to keep a conductor on the train. How wrong they are, as I am sure you will not allow the company to speak on your behalf and you will get the opportunity to prove that to the company when the re-ballot starts and you get your ballot paper.
In the meantime, we will continue to meet the company in order to come up with an agreement that protects the role of the conductor and ensures Greater Anglia trains remain safe, secure and accessible for all.