TO ALL SWR GUARDS, COMMERCIAL GUARDS & TRAIN DRIVERS
Our Ref: BR2/0146
21st February 2018
RMT TO RE-BALLOT MEMBERS DUE TO ANTI-TRADE UNION LAWS
ROLE OF THE GUARD AND EXTENSION OF DOO
SOUTH WESTERN RAILWAY
Further to my previous correspondence, despite further discussions with the company to try to resolve this matter South Western Railway continue to fail to address our concerns. Consequently, the vital safety role of the guard is still under threat and the extension of DOO remains a serious risk. This dispute has been ongoing for nearly 5 months and your strength, unity and determination has been incredible throughout.
However, there have been very cynical additions made in the 2016 Trade Union Act which put even greater restrictions on workers taking industrial action. These restrictions are some of the most draconian in Europe.
One of the consequences of the new laws is that all ballots held after March 2017 are only valid for a 6 month period from the date they close. It does not matter whether the dispute is ongoing or industrial action is being taken. It takes no notice of the fact that you are continuing this principled fight.
So we have no choice but to conduct another ballot and get a fresh mandate from members and your union is asking you to return a magnificent ‘YES’ vote as you did in the previous ballot.
Therefore, on Tuesday 27th February 2018 the independent scrutineer will send a ballot paper to your home address and the ballot will close on Tuesday 20th March 2018.
It is our firm belief that the company, being aware that we need to re-ballot you, are stalling in the hope that we either lose the ballot or do not meet the ridiculously high thresholds required to continue our action. Please do not let this happen. Not only are we asking you to vote ‘Yes’ we are asking you to make sure you use your vote and not let South Western Railway off the hook.
Our determination to defend the vital safety role of the guard and to stop the further spread of DOO is as strong as ever. I urge you to keep up your magnificent support for your union and vote strongly in favour of action in the forthcoming ballot. Due to the anti-trade union laws, now more than ever, it is massively important to get a big turnout and a strong vote in favour of action.
VOTE YES FOR ACTION
USE YOUR VOTE
SAY NO TO DOO!