Network Rail maintenance workers have voted overwhelmingly in favour of striking against bosses’ plans to cut 1,500 safety-critical jobs. The RMT union members voted by 77 percent to strike over the cuts and by 89 percent for action short of a strike in a 65 percent turn-out. The TSSA union is also balloting its members for action at the company.
The RMT executive is to discuss dates for action at a meeting next Friday 19 March.
But bosses are gearing up for a confrontation. They have prepared contingency plans to use managers and supervisors to break the strike. Robin Gisby, Network Rail’s director of operations, said that he was not prepared to see the country “held to ransom” by the RMT.
But he admitted that service would be severely hit whatever preparations the company made.
The RMT, and the TSSA, will need to call hard-hitting action to defend jobs and passengers’ safety. They will need solidarity from the wider trade union movement to win this vital fight.