13 December 2019
RMT Press Office:
As SWR strike action recommences with continuing rock solid support RMT begins sixth ballot of members under Tory anti-union laws.
The content of this circular is for RMT members only and should not be copied, reproduced or distributed on notice-boards, online or on social media.
As South Western Railway strike action recommences today after a 24 hour break with rock solid support across the franchise rail union RMT has confirmed that it will shortly be kicking off its sixth ballot of members under the Tory government’s anti-union laws.
In a message to members RMT General Secretary Mick Cash says:
“Once again I would like to take this opportunity to thank and congratulate you and your colleagues for the magnificent show of solidarity and the loyal support you have shown throughout this long running difficult dispute. The industrial action taken to date has been solidly supported and proves how determined our members are to defend the role of the Guard and stand against SWR plans to extend DOO.
“This dispute is and always has been about Driver Only Operation and the role of the Guard. RMT and our members believe that nothing less than an operational method that clearly protects the safety critical role of the Guard is acceptable. SWR are making this dispute about the doors and if we accept their optimal method of operation, the company will eradicate the role of the Guard and extend ‘driver open, driver close.
“Regrettably, the 2016 Trade Union Act has made it necessary to re-ballot you and your colleagues for industrial action. Therefore, the union’s National Executive Committee has taken the decision to re-ballot all our SWR Commercial Guard, Guard and Train Driver members for industrial action in order to continue our fight to protect the safety critical role of the Guard and to retain a Guard on SWR services.
“RMT is willing to talk about the best ways we can improve and provide a safe and accessible railway system for our members and the travelling public. RMT is willing to enter talks with no pre conditions with SWR under the auspices of ACAS with the aim of finding a settlement to this dispute.”