Rail strikes planned this month WILL take place, Aslef boss warns as he admits drivers have £59,000
Nationwide rail strikes are set to take place later this month, union leaders say, as “nobody is coming to a table” to find a solution.
Mick Whelan, general secretary of the Aslef train drivers’ union, said the strike planned for later this month will mean “virtually no service” in the affected areas.
Members of Aslef at Arriva Rail London, Chiltern Railways, Greater Anglia, Great Western, Hull Trains, LNER, Southeastern and West Midlands Trains are all set to resign on July 30 over a pay dispute. All services are expected to be disrupted.
Earlier this week it was announced that Network Rail and Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) workers would go on strike for 24 hours on July 27
Mr Whelan said Aslef members had not received a pay rise since 2019, which was the driving force behind their strike.
He said the union has not yet given an “exact figure” for the targeted salary increase.
“Most people don’t understand that no one in the rail industry has had a raise in three years… and the cost of living crisis is hitting all workers,” he told Sky News Sunday.
He added that the action made the union “sad”, saying: “We would much rather talk to find a way out, but unfortunately no one comes to the table.”
Asked if he thought the average train driver’s salary of around £59,000 could already be considered a lot for those outside the industry, he said: “Probably it is for a lot of people and I look at other workers and I think she should have what he had.
“We don’t get involved in this politics of envy debate. It is important to us that everyone has the right to a raise.”
He added that there are “many traditionalists who would like to see[the Labor Party]stand up occasionally and stand with workers more regularly.
“I’ve seen a lot of what they’ve been doing behind the scenes, so I’ve seen a lot being done. I just think we should communicate more occasionally.’
Mick Whelan, general secretary of the Aslef train drivers’ union, said the strike planned for later this month will mean “virtually no service” in the affected areas
Aslef members at Arriva Rail London, Chiltern Railways, Greater Anglia, Great Western, Hull Trains, LNER, Southeastern and West Midlands Trains will retire on July 30
Greater Anglia drivers will also go on strike on July 23rd while those of Hull Trains will go on strike on July 23rd in addition to yesterday’s action (July 16th).
Earlier this week it was announced that Network Rail and Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) workers would go on strike for 24 hours on July 27.
Network Rail services will also be affected by the RMT strike such as Chiltern Railways, Cross Country Trains, Greater Anglia, LNER, East Midlands Railway, c2c, Great Western Railway, Northern Trains, South Eastern, South Western Railway Transpennine Express, Avanti West Coast , West Midlands Trains and GTR.
This includes the Gatwick Express, adding to the travel woes for those hoping to travel abroad during the school holidays.
Members of the Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association (TSSA) will also strike over pay, job security and working conditions on the same day (July 27).
The TSSA strikes will affect the south east links between London and Kent and parts of East Sussex.
Stations that may be affected also include London St Pancras, Victoria, Charing Cross and Cannon Street, Dover Priory, Ramsgate, Ashford International, Dartford and Sevenoaks.
Members of the TSSA stationed at West Midlands Trains, Great Western Railway, Greater Anglia and TransPennine Express are currently undergoing a voting process to determine whether to join the industrial action.
TSSA members will disembark along with 14 other train operators on August 18-20.
Edinburgh’s Waverley Station: Commuters have been warned some areas will be virtually unserved during planned strikes later this month
RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch said ‘dispute will not just go away’
RMT Secretary General Mick Lynch previously said so The Telegraph: “The railway industry and the government must understand that this dispute will not simply go away.
“They must seriously make a salary offer that will help address the cost of living crisis, provide job security for our members and provide good working conditions.
“Network Rail’s recent proposals have fallen far short on pay and safety around maintenance. And the EVU didn’t even make us a salary offer in the last negotiations.
“We remain open to talks, but we will continue our campaign until we reach a negotiated settlement.”
The government has proposed new minimum service requirements to address the ongoing problem that a certain number of trains would be required during a strike.
However, ministers have acknowledged that drafting new legislation could take time.