Tube workers employed by the Trainpeople agency demonstrated outside Transport for London headquarters on Tuesday 15 January, demanding jobs and justice.
The workers, some of whom have worked on the Bakerloo Line for five years, found themselves facing the dole queue when 19 new directly-employed staff were taken on to fill roles that the agency staff were already fully trained for and had already been working in.
They set up a soup kitchen outside TfL’s headquarters on Broadway, St. James’s Park, to highlight the poverty they face being thrown into if bosses push ahead with the sackings. RMT is now moving to a strike ballot of Trainpeople members.
Drivers on the Bakerloo Line also took action on 15 January, as members of both main Tube unions (RMT and ASLEF, the drivers’ union) refused to take trains into sidings and depots until they had personally checked that all passengers were clear.
The move is a protest against cuts to station staffing levels. An RMT statement explained that, before staffing cuts, “all carriages would be checked by station staff before moving into sidings at Queens Park, Stonebridge Park and Harrow & Wealdstone depots, but the new procedure only requires a driver to make an announcement, flash the car lights on and off, shut the doors and go.
“The result has been an alarming increase in over-carrying on the Bakerloo in the last year — some 3,362 incidents compared with just 94 on all other lines put together.”