Rail workers to lobby Scottish Parliament over safety on Thursday
MEMBERS OF Scotland’s biggest rail union delivered another rock-solid strike this morning as RMT guards and drivers at Scotrail began a 72-hour stoppage against the imposition of driver-only operation on the Airdrie-Bathgate line.
They will be joined on the picket lines at 18:00 tomorrow by sleeper-train managers, who will strike for 48 hours in a dispute that has already seen three 24-hour stoppages by more than 550 staff over the company’s plan to undermine safety by removing guards.
The union accused the Scottish government and the company of hiding behind each other and described the government’s decision to bankroll Scotrail through the dispute as a scandalous abuse of taxpayers’ money.
Rail workers will lobby the Scottish parliament from 11:15 on Thursday (April 15) demanding action over safety, both on Scotail and at Network Rail, where the union is also in dispute over safety, jobs and conditions.
“It is scandalous that Scotrail have been given a nod and a wink by the Scottish government to undermine rail safety when the transport minister should be telling the company to honour its agreements with us,” RMT general secretary Bob Crow said today.
It is an abuse of taxpayers’ money to bankroll Scotrail’s strikebreaking tactics and indemnify the company against losses.
Our members are quite clear in their resolve that Scotrail must stick to the agreement it has with us that it will not impose further driver-only operation, and they have today delivered another rock-solid strike.
If Scotrail and Transport Scotland think this dispute will go away if they keep their eyes closed and hide behind each other they are plain wrong.
We will be taking our protest to the Scottish parliament on Thursday, and again I repeat my call for a face-to-face meeting with First Minister Alex Salmond to sort out this mess,” Bob Crow said.