RMT Circular Nov 2019

November 26, 2019
Our Industrial and Health and Safety representatives on the Bakerloo line have been raising serious concerns over the implementation of Working Timetable WT44/45 which has been in place since May 2019. We firmly believe this timetable is failing and is causing undue stress on Train Operator members.
The timetable has resulted in Train Operators being disciplined for SPADS, forced to work compulsory overtime and even being left unable to use the toilet. All of this has contributed to members suffering unacceptable stress levels because of undue pressure being placed you by management. Our representations on this matter have been disregarded with requests for an ad-hoc IR machinery meeting being rejected.
An emergency meeting was convened last Friday by local management seemingly as a result of them becoming aware of the anger and strength of feeling of members. However this meeting resolved absolutely nothing and management refused to reconsider the timetable or your representative’s compromise proposal for a suspension of disciplinary sanctions and other holding measures whilst this dire and unacceptable situation is addressed.
As a result of LUL’s failure to address our concerns we have told them we are now in dispute and will be balloting all Train Operators and Instructor Operators on the Bakerloo Line for strike action and industrial action short of a strike. This process has already begun and ballot papers will be sent out from next Wednesday (27th November 2019) with a closing date of Tuesday 17th December 2019.
The current state of affairs on the Bakerloo Line is totally unacceptable and management’s abject failure to address any of our concerns is nothing short of appalling. We must send them a clear message that this will not be tolerated so I urge members to vote strongly and decisively in favour of action in this dispute.
Further to my circular IR/465/19 15th November 2019, your NEC considered a recent report from the lead officer as well as correspondence from LUL received following discussions held under the auspices of ACAS. Having considered the current position the NEC decided that we should discuss the issues most recently raised by our negotiating team through the machinery and that we should also consolidate our already gained commitments from LUL.
Therefore the NEC has decided to call off all industrial action called for Wednesday 27th and Thursday 28th November 2019 and members are instructed to work normally on those days.
From this point we will continue discussions over this matter with the company and report back to this NEC, members and branches with any further developments.
Further to my previous Circular (IR/399/19, 2nd October 2019), I have received a resolution from our Central Line East Branch advising that Central Line Management are reneging on the recent agreement reached at ACAS. The Branch believes that London Underground is not adhering to the letter or the spirit of our agreement and that our members are suffering at the hands of overzealous managers who apply disciplinary actions with no discretion irrespective of the member’s case.
This matter has been considered by the National Executive Committee, which has noted the appalling treatment of our Driver members and that Central Line Management are reneging on the agreement reached at ACAS, especially when in trust we had suspended strike action.
I have been instructed to arrange an emergency meeting of our TFC rep, industrial reps, Lead Officer, Senior Assistant General Secretary and NEC members to discuss immediate preparations to ballot all of our Train Driver members of Central Line East Branch. This meeting is currently being arranged and I will keep you advised of all further developments in this matter.
Further to my previous Circular (IR/428/19, 22nd October 2019), the ballot has concluded with members’ voting as follows:-
Are you prepared to take strike action?
Number of individuals who were entitled to vote in the ballot:              620
Number of votes cast in the ballot:                                                 299
Number of individuals answering “Yes” to the question:                       294
Number of individuals answering “No” to the question:                        5
Number of spoiled or otherwise invalid voting papers returned:            0
Due to the Conservative Government’s Anti-Trade Unions Laws and intimidation of RMT cleaner members by ABM Facility Services; this ballot failed to reach the required voting turnout threshold by 11 votes – despite us having a 98.3% “Yes” vote for strike action! The requirement for 40% of members voting “Yes” was met but the requirement for 50% of all members turning out to vote wasn’t met.
On behalf of myself and the Executive Committee, I would like to take this opportunity to thank our ABM Representatives for their hard work in the campaign. I know we are all disappointed that we didn’t quite get over the line but we are still determined to achieve justice for ABM cleaners.
ABM Facilities Services, London Underground, TfL and the GLA are collectively party to a joint enterprise of exploitation via a low-cost employment model ultimately presided over by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to keep costs down at the expense of their exploited tube cleaners.
I am arranging an urgent meeting with our ABM Representatives, Lead Officer, Senior Assistant General Secretary, LU branches, London Transport Regional Council and NEC members to organise an immediate Day of Action and other campaigning activities.
This fight for workplace justice goes on and we will be stepping up the pressure on the London Mayor to end the scandal of the two-tier workforce on the London Underground. I will, of course, keep you fully advised on further developments.

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