On the frontlines against DOO

Submitted by Off The Rails on Mon, 08/21/2017 - 19:06

A report from a Northern guard

Our depot is solid with regards to the strike action. We only have 21 guards, of whom 17 have appeared on the picket line at one time or another (we average about 11 people on each strike day). Newcastle, Workington and Barrow are likewise unified.

Interestingly, the above depots will be unaffected by DOO in the short term as we are not going to receive new trains, and the majority of the network we work upon still operates on Absolute Block Signalling. The proposed upgrade to track curcuited signalling on the Tyne Valley route has recently been put back from 2019 to 2022 earliest.

However, members in the above depots are well organised, and do to recognise the need for solidarity with our colleagues in areas like Leeds, Manchester, and Sheffield. Defeat in those areas would weaken the RMT throughout the franchise and would be the thin end of the wedge.

The June election result and the resultant uncertainty in the Tory camp has also definitely emboldened members. We activists began the election campaign using the slogan "end this dispute on 8 June", and to be perfectly honest it was little more than a slogan. But by the day of the vote, the political face of the country had changed irrevocably. The turnout to hear Jeremy Corbyn in Carlisle recently saw members whom have never joined in political activities in their lives doing so and leaving uplifted.

Trade Unions