9 August 2021
RMT Press Office:
Main rail union to fight jobs cull across the industry as redundancy scheme opens today.
MAIN RAIL UNION RMT said today that it is to fight a wholesale jobs cull across the industry that kicks off for some Network Rail managerial grades today with others set to follow.
RMT's executive has committed to a campaign of opposition to proposals that it says would decimate the industry at a time when it needs to be building for the future as we emerge from the COVID pandemic and which would seriously compromise rail safety as key teams and functions are diluted and taken apart.
General Secretary Mick Lynch said:
“Network Rail and the Train Operating Companies are seeking to move ahead with a jobs cull in the rail industry from this morning which seeks to take advantage of the COVID crisis to deliver a devastating a short term cuts agenda on rail on behalf of the Government.
“RMT entirely condemns this approach which will commence even before there have been any real discussion with the trade unions on the employer’s proposals for the future of the industry. They are seeking to get the job cuts in first and organise the industry after. The idea that we would sign up to this cavalier and dangerous approach is clearly nonsense.
“The employers are to begin offering this scheme directly to some managerial staff in Network Rail from today, with other grades and the Train operators set to follow. Their plan is to induce staff to sell their jobs on a basis and process that the employers decide for themselves according to their perception of their business needs and their over-arching desire to implement job cuts and cost reductions.
“RMT's NEC does not accept or endorse this employers job cuts scheme, which is directly funded by the Government in pursuit of their objective of stripping out thousands of jobs from the rail industry. The scheme they are using does not even meet the standard of our existing agreements on reorganisations and flies in the face of our usual processes.
“RMT is prepared to campaign and fight, including through industrial action if necessary, to save jobs and resist a drive towards compulsory redundancies as we protect our members pay, conditions, pensions and safety standards.”