Southern rail strikes off pending government-union talks

Ivan Schwartz
July 19, 2017

Members of Aslef are also ending a ban on overtime which has disrupted services over the past few weeks.

Guards on Southern rail are to walk out on 1 August to coincide with the first day of a strike by train drivers.

The RMT union has suspended the industrial strike for guards planned for Tuesday, August 1, after the union's general secretary was invited to meet with Chris Grayling, Secretary of State for transport. The system excludes the role of a guard aboard the train, who is responsible for passenger health and safety, including during accidents.

The union has advised its members that industrial action called for 1, 2 and 4 August is suspended.

The BBC has contacted the Department for Transport for comment, but has yet to receive a response.

Mr Lloyd has met with both unions at Westminster after individual talks between each union and Southern broke down.

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Mr Lloyd said: "It is ridiculous this dispute has gone on for so long, causing so much anguish to so many thousands of my constituents in Eastbourne and many hundreds of thousands of rail users across the South East and beyond".

"Now is the time for no more posturing and no more of the government trying to divide and rule", he said.

"Southern and the unions need to be back around the table thinking of the passengers and resolving their differences to end this dispute".

The RMT called the new strike because of the "total failure" of the Government and Southern's owners Govia Thameslink Railway to try to resolve the year-long dispute.

"We hope talks can start as soon as possible and, ideally, within the week".

Mick Cash, the RMT's general secretary said his members were also prepared to "continue the fight".

Other reports by GizPress

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