Railway workers announce three fresh strike dates in July

Business

A rail union has revealed three fresh strike dates in July as part of a continuing fight for better pay.

The RMT said its 20,000 members working across 14 train operating companies would walk out on 20, 22 and 29 July.

The Open Championship is taking place at Royal Liverpool from 16-23 July, while fans attending the fourth Ashes Test at Old Trafford and the fifth Test at The Oval, could also face disruption.

The union, which settled a similar dispute with Network Rail three months ago, said the companies had failed to make a new pay offer after the last was rejected as being too low during the current cost of living crisis.

Just hours after the Bank of England said higher pay awards were fuelling inflation, the RMT’s leadership claimed the government was blocking a fair deal.

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “This latest phase of action will show the country just how important railway staff are to the running of the rail industry.

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“My team of negotiators and I are available 24/7 for talks with the train operating companies and government ministers.

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“Yet quite incredibly neither party has made any attempt whatsoever to arrange any meetings or put forward a decent offer that can help us reach a negotiated solution.

“The government continues to shackle the companies and will not allow them to put forward a package that can settle this dispute.

“Our members have now voted 3 times to take strike action over the last 12 months – the most of recent of which coincided with having the full details of the substandard offer from the rail operators.

“They voted by 9-1 to renew their strike mandate and RMT will continue its industrial campaign until we reach a negotiated settlement on pay, working conditions and job security.”

The RMT says its campaign of rail strikeswhich began in June 2022 – had managed to prevent bosses from pushing through redundancies and controversial reforms such as mass ticket office closures.

The latest phase of rail industry strikes, also involving the drivers’ union Aslef, targeted travellers to the Eurovision Song Contest in Liverpool and, latterly, the FA Cup Final at Wembley.

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