Talks to try and resolve the rail dispute continued over the weekend. Late on Sunday, we received an offer from the Rail Delivery Group, who are working on behalf of train operators.
While it is welcome to have finally received an offer in writing, unfortunately it fell far below your aspirations and a long way short of what is needed to address the key issues in this dispute. You can read the offer at the bottom of this page.
We let the RDG know swiftly yesterday that the offer was unacceptable and requested an urgent meeting with them today (Monday) to try and improve the offer. We are also speaking directly with government, via the Rail Minister Huw Merriman, to ensure government understand why we cannot accept the offer in the form it has been put and persuade them to facilitate an improved offer.
The offer is lengthy, detailed and in places poorly drafted. Read it for yourself at the bottom of the page. We believe some of the key shortcomings are as follows:
- The offer excludes Controllers and management grades – there is currently nothing at all for those grades who make up a significant and important part of the workforce. TSSA will not consider an offer which excludes entire grades in this way.
- The offer comes with strings attached which amount to signing away jobs in return for very little. TSSA will not agree to mass job losses across the rail industry.
- On pay, the offer is less than that being offered to staff in Network Rail and is below inflation. It fails to address the needs of lower paid staff, which has been substantially addressed in the NR offer.
- Job security is longer in NR (January 2025) than the RDG offer (1 April 2024). The lack of parity on both pay and job security, and failure to improve the offer on pay makes this unacceptable in our view.
Our negotiating team and reps are considering next steps, including the consideration of calling further industrial action.
In the meantime, please look out for your ballot papers which are arriving this week in our re-ballots. It’s vital that you vote yes and return these as soon as possible – partly to beat the Christmas rush and postal strike disruption and ensure they get back in time, but mostly in order to keep pressure on employers and government by returning renewed mandates for action to keep them at the negotiating table to address the issues of job security, pay and terms and conditions in this dispute.
We will be in touch with more updates as soon as we have further information.
Your TSSA union