By Daniel Hunter
RMT, the London Underground tube union, confirmed today (Wednesday) that tube drivers on the Jubilee Line, working out of the Stratford and Greenwich depots, have voted overwhelmingly for industrial action and are to strike in a dispute over bullying of staff through the misuse of procedures and an appalling decline in the standard of working conditions which have led to a total breakdown in industrial relations.
Action, to be taken alongside sister union ASLEF, has been called as follows:
RMT instructs members to take strike action by not booking on for duties commencing between: -
00.01 and 23.59 on 2nd April 2013
00.01 and 23.59 on 2nd May 2013
A catalogue of unresolved issues has led to the dispute and the ballot for strike action, including:
- The failure to follow agreed procedures and the misuse of the disciplinary process.
- The deterioration of basic staff facilities on the Jubilee line leaving them in an appalling and disgusting condition.
- The removal and threatened removal of some of the most basic staff benefits and facilities.
- A severe lack of support from managers for their staff even though the drivers are under severe pressure to run Jubilee Line services against a backdrop of repeated breakdowns.
“There has been a cynical attempt to trivialise the issues at the heart of this dispute but the fact is they amount to a systematic undermining of working conditions and staff morale on a tube line that faces constant pressure from frequent breakdowns and failures and where drivers are in the front line of trying to maintain both an effective service and passenger safety," RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said.
"Their reward has been attack after attack on working conditions and on both individuals and the drivers as a group of staff.
“RMT will not sit back and allow the wilful misuse of procedures on any part of the tube network as a means of bullying and intimidating our members. That is exactly what is happening at the moment to drivers working out of Greenwich and Stratford on the Jubilee Line and we are demanding that the practice be called to an immediate halt. That is why our members have voted by more than nine to one for action.
“Union reps have repeatedly told management that staff are sick of the gradual decline in working conditions and facilities which have been allowed to degenerate into a disgusting state and which appears to be another petty and vindictive way of sniping at union members on the Jubilee Line.
"Communication with staff and union reps has also been undermined and support from managers for staff has been systematically stripped away. Union warnings have been ignored and it is that attitude from management that has led to this strike action. RMT remains available for talks aimed at resolving this dispute.”
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