TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has revealed he expects union recognition for management grade staff within the Train Service Directorate which includes Control staff at Great Western Railway (GWR) "will soon become a reality", with the union in discussions over a voluntary recognition deal.
Manuel Cortes also warned that other train operating companies (TOCs) who don’t have collective bargaining rights for management grades – "we will be knocking on your door soon".
Discussions for a voluntary recognition deal for management grade staff within the Train Services Directorate at GWR covers around 100 workers.
This follows successful campaigns by TSSA to gain union recognition for Control staff at both Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) and Southeastern after TSSA lodged claims for statutory recognition with the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC) – the body which oversees unions statutory recognition claims.
In GWR's case, there was a voluntary membership check under the auspices of the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) after the union lodged a statutory claim for Control.
Manuel Cortes said:
"I'm absolutely delighted for our members in GWR as their wish for union recognition will soon become a reality. Sadly, just like at GTR and Southeastern, our claim was originally resisted by GWR.
"Thankfully, just like the other two companies GWR has seen sense and we are now negotiating a voluntary recognition agreement. This shows that our union will fully support our members seeking recognition and that everyone in management grades across our rail industry should join our growing TSSA family today.
"I have a clear message for those Train Operating Companies (TOCs) in which our members in management grades don't have collective bargaining rights – don't bury your head in the sand by forcing our union to lodge claims for statutory recognition.
"We will be knocking on your door soon, as our members face potentially the biggest reorganisation since our industry was privatised by the Conservatives. Pre-empt this by contacting our union to sign voluntary recognition deals. We are happy to involve ACAS in discussions to facilitate this.
"As GTR, Southeastern and now GWR have shown – resistance to our members' statutory right to recognition is completely futile."