16 March 2022
RMT Press Office:
RMT calls on Sadiq Khan to end privatisation on London Underground following controversial announcement.
Tube union RMT reacted with fury to the announcement this week, by TfL Commissioner Andy Byford that outsourcing contractor ABM will continue to employ tube cleaners, leaving hundreds of RMT members in the hands of a private company.
RMT called on the Mayor of London to overturn the decision or potentially face another strike on the tube.
Cleaners who worked heroically throughout the pandemic, struggle to make ends meet working under ABM because they are denied decent wages, company sick pay or free travel on TfL services.
The Commissioner’s announcement came during a question-and-answer session at the London Assembly at which Mr Byford was asked for an update on the review ordered by London Mayor Sadiq Khan as a Manifesto pledge.
In response to questioning from Elly Baker, Labour’s London Assembly transport spokesperson, whose colleagues have supported the case for bringing tube cleaning under public ownership, Mr Byford also confirmed that it was a ‘a management decision, it's not a political decision” and said that the recommendation had yet to go before TfL which Board, which is chaired by Mayor Khan.
RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch said:
“Sadiq Khan has the power to reverse this atrocious decision to keep tube cleaners under the control of greedy multinational contractors.
"The pandemic has shown tube cleaning is a public health issue and it is only right that cleaners are directly employed by TfL.
"It is not too late for the mayor to overturn this disgraceful decision.
"But he should be in no doubt, that we will not rule out an industrial response if these key transport workers continue to be abandoned by the mayor and super-exploited by greedy contractors."