18 June 2014
RMT Press Office
RAIL UNION RMT today demanded urgent answers on jobs and conditions, and a return to the stability of public ownership, as it was revealed this morning that Northern Rail’s current shareholders, SERCO and Abellio, have parted company over a joint bid for the new franchise due to come on stream in 2016.
RMT Acting General Secretary Mick Cash said:
“Clearly the announcement on the stock exchange this morning is deeply worrying for staff who find themselves caught up in the middle of the latest episode of the rail franchising shambles. RMT officials are in with the company this morning demanding clear assurances in terms of our members jobs and working conditions.
“We all know that SERCO are currently under investigation by the Serious Fraud Office in relation to public contracts and were banned by the Government from being awarded any further work. It is outrageous that staff and passengers on Northern Rail find themselves caught in the middle of a meltdown between two franchise partners which has huge ramifications for all involved.
“The only answer to this continuing rail chaos is public ownership and an end to the greed and profiteering of these parasites. Immediate plans should be put in place for a public takeover of Northern Rail, similar to the public rescue of East Coast Mainline, as the only way of preventing a total collapse.”