RMT launches bust the transport workers pay freeze campaign

RMT launches bust the transport workers pay freeze campaign

17 June 2021

RMT Press Office:

RMT launches industry wide campaign to bust the transport workers pay freeze

SPECIALIST TRANSPORT UNION RMT has launched a campaign today to bust through a Government-led pay freeze that is being imposed on transport staff – the same workers who have kept Britain moving throughout the COVID pandemic at well-documented personal risk.

Train operating companies, Network Rail and TFL are all being expected to follow the Governments pay freeze diktat when current deals expire. Existing negotiating and bargaining machinery is being ridden over roughshod in a drive to hammer down on the living standards of Britain's transport workforce.

RMT's executive has met and alongside the launch of today's “Bust the transport worker pay freeze” campaign has moved onto a dispute footing with every employer seeking to impose both the pay freeze or the most minimal increases that take no account of the impact on livelihoods across the workforce.

The campaign came on the back of yesterday’s announcement that inflation continued to soar and the new union research recalling that private companies on rail alone were making more than half a billion pounds in annual profits.

General Secretary Mick Lynch said:

“It is scandalous that transport workers, who have kept Britain moving throughout the COVID pandemic at well-documented personal risk, are being rewarded with the Government-imposed kick in the teeth of a pay freeze, even as rising inflation cuts the value of their pay and privateers sweat the network for an annual profits bonanza of over half a billion pounds each year. Our members are watching their pay lose value month by month while the profiteers are laughing all the way to the banks.

“Today we are launching an industry-wide fightback to secure pay justice for Britain's transport workforce. It is time to cut corporate profits to increase our members pay.

“RMT's executive has made it clear that the threat of pay freezes, job cuts and attacks on pensions and working conditions will be met with a co-ordinated campaign of industrial action and we will be working with unions facing the same workplace austerity to maximise our impact.

“The Government needs to lift the pay freeze shackles from the transport sector and allow us to get on with the business of negotiating pay rises for our members with their employers.”

Notes to editors:
  • Inflation rates continue to rise, with RPI shooting up to 3.3% in the year to May 2021 and the alternative measures of CPI and CPIH both rising to 2.1%, compared with 1.5% and 1.6% respectively in the years to April.
  • RMT research has revealed that the fixation with private sector involvement in operation and infrastructure will cost the industry in excess of £500 million every year in profit leakage from train operating, rolling stock leases and outsourcing in Network Rail.
Annual profits guaranteed to the TOCs under the new ERMAs and National Contracts
£140 million
Average annual profits turned into dividends by the ROSCOs
£260 million
Profits leaking to private companies through outsourcing of Network Rail renewals work last year
£174 million
Total profit leakage
£574 million

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Tagged with: Pay freeze, Transport workers, rail, rail profits