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DB Cargo - Industrial Dispute over TUPE to Maritime Transport

20 March 2019

TSSA has formally declared a trade dispute over DB Cargo’s appalling treatment of their RTS staff at Trafford Park and Wakefield Terminals who are due to TUPE transfer to Maritime Transport, an anti-trade union employer.

DB Cargo have chosen to enter into a “partnership agreement” with Maritime Transport which will secure the future of their Inter-modal business. A condition of this “partnership agreement” ensures DB Cargo continue to run trains in and out of these terminals, thus ensuring the success of DB Cargo in this area.

Of course, this is a win-win situation for both DB Cargo and Maritime as both businesses’ get something out of this deal. It is our members who are at risk! DB Cargo have chosen to do a deal with an anti-trade union employer, so whilst they were busy ensuring the future of DB Cargo at these terminals in this deal, they were not interested in protecting their staff’s futures.

We believe that DB Cargo could have and should have made it a condition of the “partnership agreement” that union recognition for the 16 staff due to TUPE also transfers and that Maritime uphold this agreement until the end of their “partnership agreement”.

RTS members fought hard to get parity on T&Cs with that of their TS colleagues after years of being treated like second class citizens. Now they are at risk of potentially losing these!

During the first consultation meeting on this TUPE transfer with Maritime transport they advised us that it is their intention to de-recognise TSSA immediately upon transfer. Yet at the same time want us to believe they are a good employer and treat their staff well! In my experience it is “good” employers who work with Trade Unions. I am concerned for my members and their T&Cs over what Maritime may want to do post transfer. You must ask yourselves “why would an employer chose to de-recognise a Trade Union, what are they planning?”

Our members deserve to TUPE with all their rights protected including the security of their union recognition, and DB Cargo should want to protect their staff, not just throw them to the wolves!

TSSA has now written to DB Cargo and Maritime to confirm we are in dispute over this and that unless they are prepared to recognise TSSA for the 16 staff due to transfer we shall ballot for industrial action.

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