Strikes to hit London's transport network
Unite members at TfL and London Underground to strike over pensions, pay and jobs
Strikes will hit the capital’s transport network this month as Unite members at Transport for London (TfL) and London Underground (LU) take action to defend pay, pensions and jobs.
On Tuesday, June 21, over 1,000 Unite members will walk out in protest at plans to slash the value of their pensions and close the existing final salary scheme. Due to shift patterns, services could also be hit on June 22.
Unite says that the pension cuts are an unacceptable effort to make members pay the price of the pandemic. The cuts are being demanded by central government in return for ongoing pandemic recovery funding for TfL.
The workers are also angry over TfL’s failure to make an acceptable pay offer to members for either 2021 or 2022, and concerns that TfL refuses to guarantee there will be no job cuts.
Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said, “It is not acceptable in any way, shape or form that the dedicated workers at TfL and London Underground are being told to pay the price of the pandemic with their pensions, pay cuts and threats to their jobs.
“Unite’s members have their union’s total support. These unwarranted threats to our members’ retirement savings, pay and jobs must be taken off the table at once or strike action will hit the London’s transport network.”
With possible strikes elsewhere on London Underground, Unite warns of the likelihood of increased traffic congestion and potential gridlock in the capital.
Unite regional officer Simon McCartney added, “Strike action will inevitably cause severe disruption across London but this is a direct result of TfL management’s repeated failure to offer guarantees on pensions, pay or job cuts.
“Strike action and the resulting disruption can be avoided by TfL making a clear commitment it won’t cut workers’ pensions or jobs, while also making a cost of living pay rise to our members.”
The strike action involves over 1,000 members of Unite who are employed at London Underground, Compliance, Policing, Operations & Security (CPOS), Victoria Coach Station, Network Management Control Centre (NMCC), Croydon Trams engineering and Surface Operations.
In addition to engineering and maintenance roles, Unite members are responsible for keeping London transport moving.
By Barckley Sumner