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Advice - South Western Railway Members During Strike Action

19 November 2019

RMT members at South Western Railway have planned industrial action throughout December, on all days other than 12th, 25th and 26th.


It is in all our interests not to undermine the legitimate industrial action of the RMT in this matter.

TSSA’s advice is that you should not volunteer to undertake any duties outside of your job description and contract of employment. Please follow the folloiwng guidance.

TSSA’s advice to members who are not themselves involved in strike action

In accordance with contractual requirements TSSA members are advised that they should make every endeavour to report for duty as normal.

Where transport difficulties prevent members from getting to work they should report their particular situation to their employer with the minimum of delay. Where necessary members should use whatever means of public transport are available.

At work, TSSA members are strongly advised to carry out their normal duties and they should not volunteer to work extended hours arising directly out of or in consequence of the dispute. Members are advised not to agree to undertake any duties that could not be regarded as part of their job description and/or have not in the past been undertaken by them in their current post.

Members should not at any time during the dispute act in breach of their Contracts of Employment and should carry out their normal duties in line with that stated above.

The above paragraph does not apply to regular rostered overtime and applies only to additional duties occasioned by the dispute.

Members should not agree to undertake any additional duties where there is any doubt as to their individual competence, in respect of safety matters. Members will appreciate the danger of liability in the event of an accident or other breach of safety.

It is very strongly stressed that in the event that Management seek the agreement of, or instruct, staff with the appropriate background, to undertake duties normally performed by members of other unions, the circumstances should be reported immediately to the TSSA . This advice applies to circumstances whether or not the individual’s judgement is that they are competent to undertake the duties in question.

We would reiterate that our members should only work their usual roster, including any regular rostered overtime, and should not volunteer to work any additional hours arising out of the dispute.

TSSA may not lawfully encourage members to take part in secondary industrial action. Members may, however, choose as a matter of individual conscience, not to cross another union’s picket line.

Members who so choose should be aware that such action is likely to put them in breach of contract, and may result in their employer taking disciplinary action against them (including dismissal).

TSSA will provide advice, support and representation to any member facing disciplinary action in such circumstances.

If you have any questions or feel that you are being asked to do work that you consider to be outside your normal duties, please contact the Helpdesk for guidance (0800 328 2673).

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