RMT wrote to the Rail Delivery Group laying out a series of principles that could pave the way for a negotiated settlement to this long-running dispute.
However, rail bosses refused to even acknowledge receipt of the letter and briefed the media that they had rejected it instead.
20,000 RMT members have been taking strike action for over 18 months in pursuit of a deal on job security, working conditions and pay.
RMT general secretary, Mick Lynch said: “The arrogance of the Tory government knows no bounds.
“They are continuing to refuse to give the RDG a mandate to make a revised offer that we can put to members in a referendum.
“Our members are sick and tired of being treated with contempt by the government and the train operating companies.
“You cannot negotiate a settlement to any dispute, unless both parties are willing to sit down, talk about the issues and be reasonable.
“RMT has laid out a comprehensive framework on how we can reach a negotiated settlement and is prepared to meet at anytime, 24/7.
“It is now up to ministers to break the deadlock and allow rail bosses to put forward a revised offer.
“We have negotiated dozens of deals with rail employers across the country, throughout the last 18 months.
“Yet we are still unable to find a way forward in this dispute which the Department for Transport has ultimate responsibility for.”