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Operating Strategy and National Ops Council update

27 July 2011

On 19 July your National reps were give a briefing about Network Rail's Operating Strategy for the next 30 years.

The Company plans to create 14 Rail Operating Centres across the country and to centralise operational activity. If this strategy goes ahead it will lead to thousands of job losses. The majority of these would be in signalling grades, but the company have stated there will be an impact on LOMs, ECROs and Controllers. NR’s representatives have committed to avoiding compulsory redundancies wherever possible, but our view is that over 30 years it should be possible to commit to no compulsory redundancies. 
Network Rail do not yet have full funding in place for the investment needed to build the Centres that would still be needed. The 30 year timescale and uncertainty around funding means that the proposals may well change! However, your reps will be engaging with the Company from now to influence the decisions that are made and to fight for protection for our members, if and when it is needed. 

The plans for Electrical Control Rooms

More urgent than the 30 year strategy are NR’s plans for Electrical Control Room Operators. Network Rail has announced that they want to centralise the 13 current ECRs into 2 Electrical Control Centres over the next 5 to 6 years. They believe this will also mean a reduction in staff to around 70. 
Your reps are very concerned about these proposals. The current ECR structure relies heavily on the detailed knowledge of very experienced staff – often around specific local circumstances. Early talks are being arranged so that ECRO reps can challenge the basis of these plans. 

Managed Stations 

Managed stations staff contracts were also discussed at the National Operations Council. Network Rail have agreed to meet with your reps in September to discuss the terms and conditions of these staff.
We will soon be meeting with stations reps to agree our demands to NR. 
If you want to get more involved in any of these issues then contact our Members Helpdesk, who will get one of our organisers to give you a call. 


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