Our Ref: BR2/14/2
7th May 2020
SUSPENSION OF RMT REPRESENTATIVES, FRATTON – SOUTH WESTERN RAILWAY
Further to my previous correspondence where I advised you that South Western Railway suspended our Representatives Mark Gamble and Brian Perren from employment using unscrupulous charges. Without question, and from the very start of this dispute, the company has acted in a heartless and reckless manner. The company has failed to conduct a fair process and has ignored due procedures. The company are now threatening to dismiss our representatives following an alleged incident that took place outside of work at an informal social event. It is bewildering that this should have had implications on their employment and we are demanding their immediate reinstatement to their current role within the company.
South Western Railway has dragged out this suspension for over 5 months and has left our colleagues in limbo. Appallingly, South Western Railway is now pursuing disciplinary charges against our colleagues and is now threatening to dismiss our representatives. It is shocking that during this global pandemic, the company are pursuing ridiculous charges and using this situation to their advantage. SWR’s attitude to the whole situation has been nothing short of abhorrent. The company has made our reps suffer for too long with no clear indication on when this will be resolved.
The company’s failings put every member at risk. If they are unable to hold a fair and just process then every member of SWR staff could face the same mismanagement. The company has treated your colleagues appallingly and we cannot allow them to try and dismiss our elected representatives.
It goes without saying that our representatives are only as strong as the members they represent and it is now more then ever that we must support our colleagues. This union has a proud history of fighting against injustice and this is no exception. We have and will always stand up for those who put themselves on the front line to represent our members. Don’t allow SWR to dictate who represents you.
Therefore, the National Executive Committee has considered this matter and believes that we must now act. I have been instructed to conduct a ballot of you and your colleagues to defend our representatives. We must stand together and send the company a clear message that we will not tolerate this injustice. Now more than ever, it is imperative that we stand together and demonstrate our strength of feeling to the company and that we will not allow SWR to bully our representatives. I am urging members to vote ‘YES’ to both questions in the ballot for industrial action.
The ballot for industrial action to defend our colleagues will commence on Thursday 14th May 2020 and you will need to ensure you return your voting paper by no later than first post, on Thursday 4th June 2020. To ensure a swift ballot and to have a chance to vote, I urge you all to ensure your membership details are correct. If your job title, address or workplace has recently changed, please contact the RMT Helpline by Email at firstname.lastname@example.org; alternatively you can call the RMT Freephone Helpline number on 0800 376 3706, the RMT switchboard on 0207 387 4771 and ask to speak to the Industrial Relations Department. Additionally, if you know a colleague who has moved or changed jobs inform them to contact the union on one of the above contact methods where we will be able to amend their details accordingly.
It has never been more vital that we come together and ensure an enormous turnout in this ballot, so I urge you all to vote overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action.
SUPPORT YOUR REPS - RETURN YOUR VOTING PAPER
VOTE ‘YES’ TO BOTH QUESTIONS IN THE
BALLOT FOR INDUSTRIAL ACTION