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TSSA takes its Virgin protest to the top

11 July 2012

A trade union involved in a dispute with Sir Richard Branson's train firm has taken its protest to the top.

Branson House
 
Placard carrying protesters from the TSSA rail union staged a demo outside the billionaire's Oxfordshire home today asking him to intervene in the row at Virgin Trains.
 
The placards read: "Virgin on the Unfair. Halt Bully Boys At Virgin Trains."
 
They handed in a letter (text below) asking Sir Richard to sort out a six month long row over a union rep who was fired and then subsequently suspended at the firm's Birmingham head office.
 
"You are known throughout the world for your leadership skills and sense of fair play" said union general secretary Manuel Cortes in the letter.
 
"Sadly these have been lacking at the management of Virgin Trains. Can you now ensure that fair play does apply at your train company?".
 
The union is currently running a ballot on industrial action among its 500 members at the firm over the company's refusal to reinstate the suspended union rep, Martin Hodges.
 
For more details see www.tssa.org.uk/virgincampaign
 
 

 
 
Dear Sir Richard,
 
Forgive me for contacting you like this at your home but I am anxious to solve a long running dispute that my union is involved with at Virgin Trains.
 
For more than six months, we have been trying, without success, to agree a solution to the sacking and subsequent suspension of one of our union reps at the company's head office in Birmingham.
 
We are willing to go to ACAS and accept binding arbitration on this issue but Tony Collins refuses to discuss the case with us. In the light of that refusal, we have been left with no alternative but to call a ballot on industrial action.
 
You are known throughout the world for your leadership skills and sense of fair play. Sadly these have been lacking at the management of Virgin Trains.
 
Can you now ensure that fair play does apply at Virgin Trains?
 
Yours sincerely,
 
Manuel Cortes,
General Secretary, TSSA

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