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UK Rail and Tube Strikes

The Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) have confirmed that rail and tube strikes will occur next week as discussions with Network Rail, train operators and London Underground have failed. Union members at Network Rail and 13 train operators will stage 24-hour walkouts on Tuesday 21st, Thursday 23rd, and Saturday 25th June. Operators have said that they predict this will have a knock-on effect on other days surrounding the walkouts, and there will be six days of disruption. 


                    


More than 40,000 staff will participate in the rail strikes set to be


the biggest in more than 30 years. The strikes come after talks to resolve disputes about pay, redundancies, jobs, and conditions fail. Millions of commuters are expected to be impacted as only around 50% 1The RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said, ‘It has to be restated that the source of these disputes is the decision by the Tory Government to cut £ 4 billion of funding from our transport systems - £2billion from National Rail and £2billion from Transport for London.’. 


 


In response to the planned strikes, the government has urged unions to stop the walkouts. A spokesperson for the Department for Transport has said it is ‘hugely disappointing’ that the industrial action is going ahead. They made sure to remind people that the government has committed £16billion ‘to keep our railways running throughout the pandemic while ensuring not a single worker lost their job’. They also warn that ‘anything that drives away even more {passengers} risks killing services and jobs’. 


 


Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, said the government is doing their best to get the unions to call off any walkouts and that they are trying to find solutions to minimise the disruption. But he also added that it is up to the train operating companies, the unions, and Network Rail to come to an agreement. This is because the government is ‘not the employer’. 


 


Replacement services in the form of buses will run to help ease the effects of the strikes, but they are expected to be crammed with eventgoers and commuters. As a result, people have been advised by the government to work at home where possible. However, there is a concern for lower-paid workers, like those in the health service or cleaners, who cannot do so. 


 


Shehab Khan, a political reporter for ITV News, has reported on social media that the rail strikes could be repeated at regular intervals for months to come. In a tweet, he has stated that the ‘Head of RMT tells me that they’ll keep striking until they get an offer they’re happy with – which they expect will take months’. 


 


Here is a list of the operators who will be involved:


-       Chiltern Railways


-       Cross Country Trains


-       Greater Anglia


-       LNER


-       East Midlands Railway


-       c2c


-       Great Western Railway


-       Northern Trains


-       Southeastern


-       South Western Railway


-       Transpennine Express


-       Avanti West Coast



-       West Midlands Trains


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