London prepares for strikes after 'bodged' Night Tube plans
PUBLISHED: 19:00 12 January 2016
PA/Press Association Images
A series of strikes could bring the capital to a standstill after unions announced action over the "bodged" introduction of the night Tube.
Drivers with the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) and Unite unions will walk out for 24 hours from 6.30pm on Tuesday, January 26.
These two unions will be joined by Aslef for further 24-hour strikes on Monday, February 15 and Wednesday 17, with RMT non drivers joining the action from 9pm and Aslef workers from 9.15pm. Aslef members will stage a fresh strike on Wednesday, January 27.
“RMT members are furious at the bodged introduction of the Mayor’s night Tube plans and the fact that they have been tied in with a pay deal that has left our members dangling on a string and out of pocket since April last year,” said general secretary Mick Cash.
“The union supports the principle of a properly worked out night Tube service introduced through agreement with the unions, but the abject failure to work through the detail has led to a comprehensive breakdown in the negotiations and has forced us to name a programme of further industrial action.”
The threat of further strike action follows a spate of walkouts which threw the capital into
chaos last year. The disputes centre on night Tube services, which were due to start in September.
The RMT is also set to ballot 1,300 Tube maintenance workers over future action, while London Underground (LU) is in the process of hiring 180 new part-time drivers so the night Tube can start “as soon as possible”.
Steve Griffiths, LU’s chief operating officer, said the unions’ position was “absurd and detached from the real world”.
“Apparently, above-inflation pay rises, the creation of 700 more Tube jobs and the total protection of the work-life balance of existing staff are grounds for strikes.”