Tube Power Workers' Eight Day Strike To Go Ahead
Tuesday 1st July 2014
An eight day strike on the London underground is set to go ahead tonight - by staff who make sure the stations get enough power.
Transport for London claim the walkout will have no impact but unions say we should not rule out any travel disruption.
Union members are planning to walkout from 8pm tonight until 8pm Wednesday 9th July in a long-running row over conditions and other issues.
A previous strike was called off to allow talks.
Unite regional officer Hugh Roberts said when the strike was announced that there is "a real possibility" that the Underground could close down, affecting the travel plans of thousands of people wanting to watch the Tour de France on 7th July.
"The public should be under no doubts this could and should have been resolved weeks ago," he continued. "The blame for the fact that it hasn't sits squarely on the shoulders of London Underground's obstructive management.
"We called off a strike due to be held over the May bank holiday to hold talks with Acas, but London Underground shifted the goalposts and has refused to meaningfully negotiate further.
"The issue here is broken promises, unfair treatment over differentials and worsening conditions. London Underground management's penny-pinching attitude is not being driven by common sense, but by the background agenda of budget cuts in the Treasury's funding."
The dispute centers around workers transferring to other organisations several years ago and then coming back under London Underground management, but with different conditions.
Richard Jones, LU's head of command and control, said they are committed to discussions.
"We have resolved a number of issues and have proposed a further reward package for staff in return for changes to the way our people work which will give us greater flexibility and staff availability when the network needs it most," he said.
"It is disappointing that the Unite and RMT unions have rejected our proposal, and I urge them to continue with constructive discussions rather than threaten pointless industrial action. We are developing contingency plans to minimise the impact on the network should the strike action go ahead."
London Underground later said that "due to detailed planning" passengers should not see any impact on the tube network.