Rail unions

Fantasy Union of Rail and Transport Workers

What kind of union do we need? There are strengths and weaknesses in our current union set-up. Union officials will often have you believe that things can only be done the way they are done, because ... well, because they have always been done that way.

We do not agree. We have several criticisms of the existing rail unions, so it is only fair that we set out in more positive terms what our ideal union might look like. Let's call it the Fantasy Union of Rail and Transport Workers (FURT).

What kind of union do we need? There are strengths and weaknesses in our current union set-up. Union officials will often have you believe that things can only be done the way they are done, because ... well, because they have always been done that way. We do not agree. We have several criticisms of the existing rail unions, so it is only fair that we set out in more positive terms what our ideal union might look like. Let's call it the Fantasy Union of Rail and Transport Workers (FURT).

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Industrial news in brief

Author: 

Patrick Murphy, Peggy Carter, Ollie Moore and Gemma Short

Teachers at Small Heath School in Birmingham have won significant successes in their campaign against academy status and in defence of the suspended NUT rep, Simon O’Hara. In fact they appear to have defeated the academy proposal entirely and can now focus on lifting Simon’s suspension.

Win at Small Heath school; Lambeth library workers strike; Tube station staff to strike; London Underground track workers strike for safety; No to privatisation at V&A.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Industrial news in brief

Author: 

Peggy Carter, Gemma Short, Harry Davies, Gareth Davenport and Ollie Moore

Workers at the UK′s train operating companies are facing a huge attack on their pensions due to government legislation that ends the contracting-out of the Second State Pension. The legislation means higher National Insurance contributions for both employees (1.4%) and employers (3.4%).

The government has also passed legislation to help employers out with this — by allowing them to carry out annual raids on occupational pensions schemes, without even having to consult with scheme trustees.

Rail pensions sell-out; save London Metropolitan University; Sheffield recycling workers to strike; Tube unions suspend strikes; 100 Sheffield steel jobs to go; Workers' Rights in a Global Economy; local government pay “offer”.

Issues and Campaigns: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Rail workers: fight the pensions sell out!

Off The Rails readers may be aware of the legislation coming into force this April that ends the contracting-out of the Second State Pension, resulting in higher National Insurance contributions for both employees (a 1.4% increase) and employers (3.4%). The Tory government has also passed some legislation to help employers out with this - by allowing them to carry out annual raids on occupational pensions schemes, without even having to consult with scheme trustees.

Trade Unions: 

Support the Tube strikes

Author: 

Ollie Moore

London Underground workers in the RMT, TSSA, and Aslef unions will strike for 24 hours, starting on the evening of 26 January.

London Underground workers in the RMT, TSSA, and Aslef unions will strike for 24 hours, starting on the evening of 26 January.

Publications: 

Trade Unions: 

Industrial news in brief

Author: 

Ollie Moore, Michael Tron and Gemma Short

Lambeth Libraries staff have voted overwhelmingly for strike action to save jobs and keep all ten Lambeth libraries open.

Staff voted 89% to strike against plans to close libraries and cut jobs. Unison will now be discussing extended strike action with the library workers in the borough. This strike vote follows a community campaign to keep the libraries open, as well as a walk out by staff in December when news circulated that books were already being taken out of one of the libraries.

Lambeth workers strike to save libraries; Tube unions call new strikes; teachers struggle against cuts; support LANAC candidates in NUT; Birmingham job losses; fighting for fair 16-19 funding; FE college pay strike planned; fighting union busting; Sheffield housing strike.

Publications: 

Around the world: 

Trade Unions: 

Issues and Campaigns: 

Industrial news in brief

Author: 

Gemma Short, Peggy Carter, Tim Cooper and Ollie Moore

Cleaning and security workers on London’s Docklands Light Railway (DLR) won a big victory before Christmas, settling a long-running dispute over terms and conditions for a deal that represents a 75p/hour pay increase, backdated to April 2015.

The workers, employed by outsourced subcontractor Interserve, struck several times throughout 2015. An RMT statement called the deal “a massive breakthrough”, which “gives some much-needed Christmas cheer to a group of London transport workers who have fought long and hard for pay justice.”

DLR cleaners win; jobs battle continues on Tube; RMT gears up to defend Glen Hart; Momentum on the streets; no mandate for Prentis; Arriva trains strike; Lambeth librarians balloted.

Publications: 

Trade Unions: 

DOO statement

Traincrew unions Aslef and RMT have issued a joint statement clearly stating that they "will not agree" to the introduction or extension of Driver Only Operation, including in the form of "Driver Controlled Operation" or "Driver Door Operation".

The statement goes on to set out some of the main reasons for opposing DOO and commits the unions to "[campaigning] in unity to oppose any extension of DOO and DCO/DDO and to seek to explore ways of reversing it where it has been introduced."

Trade Unions: 

Pages