17 March 2015
RMT Press Office
RAIL UNION RMT has confirmed that staff on Hull Trains will strike this weekend and through to Monday after voting by more than nine to one for both strike action and action short of a strike in a dispute over the totally unwarranted redundancy of a staff member who the union believes is being forced out of the company by underhand means for challenging a senior manager who was verbally abusing a colleague.
All staff affected have been instructed not to book on for any shifts that commence between:-
- 12:00 (midday) hours on Sunday 22nd March 2015 and 11:59 hours on Monday 23rd March 2015.
The dispute hinges on entirely bogus company claims that they have recently had to have a ‘necessary minor reorganisation’ which identified an individual as being at risk of redundancy. At the members appeal hearing the company stated that she did not fall under the collective bargaining agreements and therefore existing agreements did not apply. However, as part of the 2014 pay award the company identified that same member as an employee who was covered by collective bargaining and on acceptance of the pay award she was granted the pay uplift along with all the other employees who are covered by collective bargaining and who all benefit from the job protection agreements.
Importantly, last year the RMT member now being forced out reprimanded a Senior Manager at Hull Trains after she witnessed them verbally abuse a colleague. In light of this incident, the union’s negotiating team believes that the ‘necessary minor reorganisation’ was a ploy to manage our member out of the business and that management breached the job protection agreements to speed up this process. Furthermore, at no time did Hull Trains inform the union, either at locally or nationally, that a reorganisation was taking place and that RMT members were at risk of redundancy.
The company have continued to point blank refuse to redeploy our member even though suitable alternative vacancies exist.
The union executive has put on the action in light of the overwhelming mandate for action and the total failure by the company to negotiate a settlement of the dispute
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said:
“The union’s executive committee has considered this matter and deems Hull Trains’ failure to abide by the collective bargaining procedures as unacceptable. This union will not tolerate any member being removed from employment by underhand means. The company are riding roughshod over their own procedures and this has to be opposed in the strongest possible terms.
“RMT has given Hull Trains plenty of time and opportunity to reinstate our member but they have chosen instead to adopt a cavalier and confrontational attitude. As a result of that hard-headed approach we balloted for both strike action and action short of a strike. Our members registered their anger in an overwhelming vote for action and following consideration by the union’s executive we will be taking action this weekend and through into Monday .
“RMT remains available for talks.”