MP Andrew Griffith 'dismayed' at planned strikes in Sussex

Andrew Griffith, MP for Arundel and the South Downs, has said he is ‘dismayed’ at plans for strike action this week.

National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) have elected to strike this week on 21st, 23rd and 25th. Said to be the largest rail strike in 30 years.

Today, Arundel and South Downs MP Andrew Griffith strongly condemned the railway strike action by RMT members.

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He is reportedly ‘dismayed’ to find out there will be no rail services in the Arun Valley on these days – impacting residents in Arundel, Ambereley, Pulborough and Barnham.

Arun Valley trains will be affected by the strikes

Mr Griffith said: “For the RMT to inflict a strike upon local school children taking exams, commuters heading back to work and relatives visiting family members is a monumental act of self-harm.

"Keeping some of our rural rail links open in Sussex post Covid was an uphill battle at the best of times.

"Driving away rail users by these strikes makes no sense even for those working in the rail industry. My office is in regular touch with GTR and will share any updates on services as we get them.”

The strikes have been planned as the union said ‘thousands of jobs’ were being cut and staff were facing pay rises that fel ‘below inflation’.

It has been reported that 50,000 staff are planning to walk out across the country.

A spokesperson for RMT said in a statement on Saturday (June 20): “Despite the best efforts of our negotiators no viable settlements to the disputes have been created.

“It has to be re-stated that the source of these disputes is the decision by the Tory Government to cut £4bn of funding from our transport systems - £2bn from national rail and £2bn from Transport for London.”

They added: “We want a transport system that operates for the benefit of the people, for the needs of society and our environment – not for private profit.

"We call on our members to stand firm, support the action, mount the pickets and demonstrate their willingness to fight for workplace justice.”#

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Which trains will run in Sussex during strike action next week?