Category Archives: Transport

TSSA rally at City Hall (London) on Thursday

The Tories are punishing Londoners for voting in a Labour Mayor

In December 2018 TfL Commissioner, Mike Brown, published a new business plan,
which includes a further 30% of cuts by 2022.

The ‘back and middle office’ areas of TfL that are slated for further cuts include
Engineering, Major Projects, maintenance, Health, Safety & Environment, Strategy
& Planning, and the Finance & Commercial departments.

Although these may not technically be cuts to frontline services, we are extremely
concerned that these cuts will reduce TfL’s ability to deliver a safe, reliable transport
service. There will be a major impact on Londoners’ daily experience of transport,
whether on the Tube, Overground, DLR, buses, tram, walking, cycling or driving.

These cuts will also have particular impacts on poorer passengers,
disabled people, women, BAME and younger / older Londoners.
The many are paying the price of the failures of the few.

Barnet Tories to introduce parking charges at local parks

Conservative-run Barnet Council has agreed to charge up to £6 a day for parking at local parks. The decision was forced through by Conservative councillors at this week’s Environment Committee (21 Jan). Labour councillors voted against the policy.

 Although the principal of charging was agreed, a consultation will be held on the charging proposals for specific parks.

The parks affected in the first phase are: Barnet Playing Fields, King George V Playing Fields, Mill Hill Park, Old Courthouse Recreation Ground, Scratchwood Open Space and West Hendon Playing Fields.

The Council believe the policy will raise up to £150,000 a year.

Labour’s Environment spokesperson, Cllr Alan Schneiderman said: “This is an ill-conceived money making scheme from Barnet Tories that is simply going to lead to park goers parking in neighbouring roads, many of which already lack enough spaces for residents. Rather than another consultation on this scheme, it simply needs to be scrapped”.


Ends.
Notes:
1. A copy of the report on parking charges at local parks (Agenda Item 8): http://barnet.moderngov.co.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=695&MId=9733&Ver=4

Rail: You haven’t been asked your opinion since 1994. Here’s your chance!

We’ve got three days to get public ownership on the table for our railways.

2018 was a disaster year for our railways, and the government are asking for suggestions.

This is the biggest review since privatisation. Let’s make sure they’re looking at public ownership to fix our broken railway.

Tell them what you want to see – but hurry! The deadline is this Friday 18th of January.

RMT Parliamentary demonstration & rally Tuesday 29th January 2019

Solidarity with our Tube Cleaners

RMT Parliamentary demonstration & rally

Tuesday 29th January 2019

5.00pm: (sharp) Demonstration opposite Parliament (Old Palace Yard, SW1P 3JY)

6.30pm: Rally in the Houses of Parliament

 

London Underground’s 3000 cleaners have been outsourced to global contractor ABM.

Despite working unsocial hours, in dirty and hazardous conditions, our cleaners are being treated less favourably compared to other workers directly employed by Underground.

That means inferior sick pay, holidays, pensions and travel facilities.

On top of this the cleaning workforce is set to be cut by a third from 3000 to 2000, piling the pressure on these hard-pressed workers.

RMT is holding a demo and rally at Parliament to demand:

  • No Cleaning Job Cuts
  • Equal Conditions with London Underground workers
  • Bring all cleaning work in-house.

 

Thailand: Railway workers fight for justice – support the online campaign

The leaders of Thailand’s State Railway Workers Union (SRUT) have faced dismissals and enormous fines because of their efforts to point out unsafe working conditions on the country’s railways.

In a story dating back to a fatal derailment back in 2009, the international trade union movement, including the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) have stood by the trade union leaders — as has the International Labour Organisation (ILO).

Last year, Thailand’s Supreme Labour Court ordered seven union leaders to pay damages amounting to nearly three-quarters of a million US dollars.

At the request of the SRUT and the ITF, LabourStart has launched a campaign calling on the Thai government and the employer to drop the claims against the union, and to return their back pay and benefits.  Please show your support here:

http://www.labourstart.org/go/srut

And please share this message with your friends, family and fellow union members.

Rail firms have paid over £1 billion to shareholders in last 6 years, finds TUC

As fares rocket up again today, the TUC publishes analysis showing how privatisation has failed.

The TUC today (Wednesday) reveals that the same private rail companies that are putting fares up by 3.1% today, have paid out over £1 billion in dividends to shareholders in the last six years.

The TUC is concerned that these shareholder pay-outs are excessive given the poor-quality service and high costs that workers face commuting by rail.

TUC analysis finds that UK commuters spend up to five times as much on season tickets as for European equivalents.

Someone on an average salary travelling from Chelmsford to London will have to fork out 13% of their pay for season tickets (£393 a month).

By contrast, comparable commutes would cost a mere 2% of the average salary in France, 3% in Ireland and 4% in Germany and Belgium.

ntry From To Monthly season ticket cost % of average earnings
UK Chelmsford London £393 13%
UK Manchester Liverpool £257 8%
France Étampes Paris £68 2%
Ireland Drogheda Dublin £116 3%
Germany Eberswalde Berlin £120 4%
Belgium Ghent Brussels £150 4%

Wages are set to grow by only 2.5% in 2019, while season tickets will go up by 3.1%. It will be the ninth time in the last ten years that rail fares have risen by more than wages.

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:

“The most reliable thing about our railways is the cash that goes to private shareholders each year. But with the most expensive fares in Europe, that can’t be right. It’s rewarding failure and taking money away that should be invested in better services.

“It’s time to take the railways back into public hands. Every penny from every fare should go back into the railways. The number one priority should be running a world class railway service, not private profit.”

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said:

“The British fare-payer has been battered by the toxic combination of gross mismanagement and profiteering by the private companies exploiting Britain’s rip-off railways.

“Our passengers have been left paying the highest fares in Europe to travel on rammed-out and unreliable services and that is a national disgrace. The only solution is to sweep this whole racket away and return our railways to public ownership.”

ASLEF General Secretary Mick Whelan said:

“The train companies are telling passengers to pay more for a poorer service and that’s not a great offer, is it? Not for passengers – or for voters at the next election.

“Commuters complain about persistent delays and cancellations, and the consumer group Which? says the privatised train operators are one of this country’s least trusted groups – beaten to bottom place only by second-hand car dealers.

“Wages aren’t keeping pace with inflation and yet the train companies, and their chum the Transport Secretary Chris Grayling, are pushing up prices yet again. What a way to run the railway!”

TSSA General Secretary Manuel Cortes said:

“Millions of commuters will be staggered and furious that fares are rising yet again while privateers stuff shareholders pockets with cash.

“This situation is untenable, and the fact is only bringing the railways back into public hands will end the misery for so many each day.

“Britain and the British public deserve so much better than failing Chris Grayling and this useless Tory government.”

Unite national officer for the rail industry Harish Patel said:

“Given last year’s rail timetable chaos, presided over by the hapless transport secretary Chris Grayling, there should be no rail fare increases for hard-pressed travellers in 2019 – fares should have been frozen. The 3.1 per cent rise is an insult.

“As usual, the real ‘winners’ are the greedy shareholders of the privatised rail companies that have gobbled up more than £1bn in ill-gotten dividends in the last six years – money that could have gone towards freezing fares and boosting rail investment.

“Every day the case for the public ownership of the rail industry grows stronger, especially after the woeful performance of 2018.”

 

ARTIFICIAL, INTELLIGENCE, ROBOTS, NEW TECHNOLOGY, AUTOMATION: WHERE NOW FOR TRANSPORT WORKERS?

A serious detailed exploration of what is happening in transport and what we need to do. This also affects all users of transport.

Key speakers:

SHARON GRAHAM,  UNITE

LEONARDO IMPETT

VICTOR FIGUEROA, ITF

Saturday February 16th, 2019

10.00-16.00 at Unite the Union Head Office, 128 Theobalds Road, London WC1X 8TN

If you want to attend please contact – roger@hsm1.org.uk

Join our #RailRevolution New Year Protests

Sick of rising rail fares and chaotic commuting?

Tired of the endless tinkering with our broken privatised railway system?

It’s time for a #RailRevolution.

On Wednesday 2 January 2019, as our rail fares rise again by 3.1%, we’re joining forces with our friends at We Own It, the Association of British Commuters and NOR4NOR to organise the Rail Revolution: National Day of Action calling for radical reform.

Coinciding with the public consultation for the government’s new ‘root and branch’ review of our railways: the Williams Rail Review, we’re calling on passengers all over the country to respond in favour of a re-unified national rail network run for people not profit.

On Wednesday 2 January 2019, protests will take place at stations across the country (see list below), with a central one at London King’s Cross from 7:30-9:00am. See the Facebook event page for details, print a Bring Back British Rail placard and come join us!

Then on Friday 18 January 2019, to mark the deadline of the Williams Rail Review public consultation, we’ll be delivering our Care2 Petition to Re-nationalise our Railways signed by 118,039 people to the Department for Transport to demonstrate the sheer weight of public support for public ownership. Make sure you add your name before then: www.bringbackbritishrail.org/care2

Join Protests at Stations across the Country

Wednesday 2 January 2019:

06:45-09:00 Kings Lynn Station

07:00-10:00 Levenshulme Railway Station

07:30-09:30 London King’s Cross Station

07:30-09:00 Cardiff Central Station

07:30-09:00 Liverpool Lime Street

07:30-09:00 Birmingham New Street

07:30-09:00 Manchester Piccadilly

07:30-09:00 Lewisham Railway Station

07:30-09:30 Whitehaven Railway Station

07:30-09:00 Warrington Central Station

08:00-09:00 Bristol Temple Meads

08:00-10:00 Leeds Railway Station

08:00-09:00 Watford Junction

08:00-10:00 Doncaster Railway Station

08:00-09:00 Newcastle Central Station

09:30-11:30 Sheffield Meadowhall Interchange

10:00-12:00 Norwich Railway Station

10:00-12:00 Stratford Railway Station

16:00-18:00 Millom Railway Station

16:00-18:00 Birmingham Snow Hill

16:30-18:30 Hastings Railway Station

16:30-18:00 Clapham Junction

Thursday 3 January 2019:

09:00-11:00 Edinburgh Waverley (Market Street)

TSSA responds to the new TfL Business Plan: enough is enough!

The new TfL Business Plan, published on Wednesday, throws into question the very future and safety of transport services in London, with proposals for even greater cuts to jobs, services and investment over the next 3-4 years.

As you have probably seen, Mike Brown’s email to staff said:

How Mike Brown Stole Christmas“This is one example of how we will further reduce our back and middle office costs across the entire organisation. Over the next three years, we will cut the cost of these areas by 30 per cent. This will only be possible by looking at all the ways we can deliver a better service at reduced cost, including reducing the number of roles in our back and middle office functions, building on what we have already achieved in these areas. As always, where any headcount reduction is necessary, we will engage in full and meaningful consultation with our people and trade unions.”

Merry Christmas to you too, Mike!

TfL’s financial difficulties are a result of the massive cuts in central Government funding, which has decreased by 46% since 2011, with the DfT cutting the operating grant from £1 billion in 2013 to £0 in 2018/19. London is now the only capital city in the world whose transport system receives no public funding. This starving of our transport system has been made far worse by the Elizabeth Line fiasco which is costing TfL and the public billions.

Cost over-runs by private contractors at Crossrail and central Government austerity cuts should not – and must not – undermine London’s transport services or affect our members jobs or terms and conditions. Our members have suffered the brunt of the pain so far, with job cuts of over 20% and vacancies running at around 10%. Workloads have increased and the pressures on staff are immense. Meanwhile, Directors get pay rises and huge bonuses, and we learn that the number of TfL staff earning over £100,000 has increased by 25%. This is OBSCENE.

TSSA has called for urgent talks with TfL about the Business Plan, and these will take place next week, at a Company Council meeting on Tuesday, 18 December. We will be clear with TfL – and City Hall – that enough is enough, and the gloves are now off. TSSA is here to support you and your colleagues, and we promise to work with other trades unions and all allies to protect your jobs, terms and conditions, to put an end to the “fat cat” gravy-train in TfL, and to restore Government funding to TfL and so ensure the safety and sustainability of London’s transport services.

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