27 September 2019
RMT Press Office:
RMT confirms strike action on Scottish Sleeper services goes ahead from Sunday with all services cancelled as SERCO block settlement
RAIL UNION RMT today confirmed that a package of strike action and action short of a strike on the Caledonian Sleeper goes ahead from Sunday - with all services cancelled - after the operator, SERCO, snubbed any chance of a settlement in talks this week on a raft of serious concerns raised by staff that have ruined working lives and placed the workforce under intolerable pressure.
As a result of the company choosing to retreat to their bunker rather than engaging in serious negotiations RMT has confirmed that the following action goes ahead exactly as planned;
Members not to book on for any shifts between:
•12.00 hours on Sunday 29thSeptember 2019 until 11.59 hours on Tuesday 1st October 2019.
Additionally, members are instructed not to work any overtime or rest days, not to perform higher grade duties and to work to their original job description from 00.01 hours on Wednesday 2ndOctober 2019 until further notice.
The union has accused SERCO of stringing staff along in talks while effectively slamming the door on any settlement. RMT representatives have had a number of meetings with the company and further talks at an Avoidance of Disputes meeting with the company this week failed to produce any serious movement from SERCO who seem quite happy to leave their staff hanging out to dry.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said;
"Every effort RMT has made to settle this dispute with SERCO has been kicked back in our faces. There was an opportunity to reach an agreement that would address the matters at the heart of the dispute this week but once again SERCO squandered the opportunity and chose instead to string us along. That is no way to run a railway.
"The union is angry and frustrated that promises made to us to deal with the serious concerns of the Caledonian Sleeper staff have not been honoured and the failure of SERCO to come up with any serious progress in key talks yet again this week leaves us with no choice but to go ahead with our industrial action exactly as planned.
"RMT members have been put under intolerable personal stress as a result of the company's mismanagement of the sleeper service. They know it, they have promised to do something about it but they have failed to deliver. The move to strike action, and the shutdown of the service, is entirely SERCO's fault and the public will understand that. Everyone knows that when it comes to failure they are global specialists.
"The union remains available for genuine and serious talks but the ball is now firmly in SERCO’s court."
Picket line locations as follows but please contact the press office to arrange interviews in advance:
London Euston – Picket line from 19.50 until 23.30 (Sunday and Monday) - Eversholt Street Steps – across from the royal George pub.
Fort William – Picket line from 18.30 until 19.50 (Sunday and Monday) at the Calmac entrance to the station
Glasgow – Picket line from 20.00 until 23.15 on the Sunday night and 21.00 until 23.40 on the Monday night. Gordon Street entrance to Glasgow Central
Edinburgh Waverley – Picket line from 20.00 until 23.15 on the Sunday night and 21.00 until 23.40 on the Monday night. Waverley Bridge at the top of the ramps.
Aberdeen – Picket line from 20.00 until 21.40 (Sunday and Monday). Guild Street steps.