RMT alters Christmas strike days

Photo: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

Photo: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

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Rail union RMT is altering its guards Christmas strike dates on Southern following consultation with reps and members.

The union is rescinding the instruction to conductor members to take strike action from December 22 to December 24. Members have now been instructed to work normally on those days, the union has confirmed.

Instead, the union is instructing members to take strike action by not booking on for any shifts between the hours of 00.01am on Monday December 19 and 11.59pm on Tuesday December 20.

The other actions called from Tuesday December 6 to Thursday December 8 and from Saturday December 31 to Tuesday January 2 remain in force.

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “Our guards on Southern are in daily contact with passengers and the support for our fight to defend safety remains phenomenal. RMT is truly grateful for the overwhelming public backing for the campaign to keep a second, safety-critical member of staff on Southern trains.

“It is from that daily feedback from passengers that the union has taken the decision to alter the dates for action over Christmas. That’s the difference between us and Southern. We listen, they don’t.”

Responding to the RMT’s change of dates for strike action, a spokesperson for Southern said: “We welcome the decision by the RMT to cancel these dates immediately before Christmas but by announcing new dates in the same week they will still be disrupting passengers’ travel plans at this busy time.

“The new strikes on December 19 and 20 are clearly co-ordinated to follow the ASLEF strikes and cause maximum disruption. If the unions are listening to passengers then they will call off all industrial action, including that over the New Year.”

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