Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://secure.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/26656

Posted on 4 January 2018 at 14:00 GMT

RMT pickets at Basingstoke, against DOO, 10.11.17, photo Nick Chaffey

RMT pickets at Basingstoke, against DOO, 10.11.17, photo Nick Chaffey   (Click to enlarge)

Strike against driver-only operation on five rail networks

By a RMT member

We're barely into the new year and guards at five train operating companies are taking strike action in defence of railway safety.

While greedy bosses push forward with their plans to de-skill and then de-staff the railways in order to ratchet up their profit margins, RMT transport union members across the country are fighting back in one of the most bitter and resolute industrial struggles in recent times.

The Socialist Party salutes the RMT and the guards who have shown tremendous courage and resolve to retain the guarantee of a guard on our trains.

Fares continue to rise and yet profits are siphoned off and pocketed by shareholders. Most of the UK's rail operators are now foreign-owned, often subsidising rail operations abroad.

Instead of investing, the rail companies continue to attack workers - with guards in the firing line along with station staff and others who are treated like a luxury rather than a necessity.

Raking in more profit

As we start the new year, fares have increased by an average of 3.4% with season tickets soaring by 3.6%, yet rail companies are unwilling to commit to keeping guards on trains in the interests of passenger safety.

The Socialist Party calls for the whole of the railway network to be nationalised and run in the interests of the people and the environment, alongside buses and trams, as part of an integrated national public transport system - not simply bailed out to make them attractive to their profiteering owners.

While it is welcome that Jeremy Corbyn and other Labour Party figures support the guards, local Labour politicians don't seem to have get the message.

Merseyside Labour's Steve Rotheram and Joe Anderson have publicly stabbed the Merseyrail guards in the back while Labour councillors across northern England sit on their hands and fail to act while Northern Rail tries to do the guards in.

Jeremy Corbyn needs to bring these characters to heel and demand that they get behind the RMT or stand aside.

Furthermore, while he is right to stand for renationalisation of the railways he shouldn't wait for rail franchises to expire before doing it - this could take a decade or longer.

Coordinate and fight on

The disputes are now beginning to resemble a national dispute with all four corners of England affected in one way or another.

There is no doubt that the Tory government and the Department for Transport are tacitly supporting the attack on guards, hoping that they can land a defeat on the RMT. The bosses hope that once the guards are beaten they can move on to the other grades.

This is why it is vital that the RMT brings together guards from all of the companies in dispute at this present time along with reps from those which are not yet directly involved.

As franchises come up for renewal or change hands as has happened in December at London Midland/West Midlands Trains, talk is of the threat to the safety-critical role of the guard - the 'guard guarantee'.

There is now no time to lose in making sure that all union members are prepared and up for the fight.

The Socialist Party says:

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.






Related links:

RMT:

triangleRMT strikes against driver-only operation continue

triangleRMT rail members buoyed by coordinated action

triangleAnti-DOO lobby of Liverpool's transport committee

triangleNationalise rail now

triangleVirgin train workers vote for strike action over pay

Strike:

triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleHackney school cleaners strike

triangleHome care workers to strike

triangleMini-strike wave continues and intensifies

Rail:

triangleRail: fares up, bosses' pay up - delays and cancellations up

triangleBrutal rail privateer Abellio takes over Midlands rail services

triangleThe Socialist inbox

Trains:

triangleFight to keep guards on trains continues despite setback Aslef deal

triangleCoordinated strike action against driver-only operation

Labour:

triangleCorbyn's Labour needs 100% anti-cuts strategy and fight for democracy

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

17/1/18

Women

Socialist Party women's meeting brings together members to share experiences

17/1/18

Newham

Packed Newham meeting against academies

17/1/18

Liverpool

Lobby pushes Liverpool council to oppose privatisation

17/1/18

Barking

Heating scandal on east London estate

17/1/18

Policing

Undercover policing legal challenge

17/1/18

Woolwich

No to the Woolwich monster block

17/1/18

Union

Workplace news in brief

17/1/18

Union

PCS union 2018 elections - nominate the left slate for a continued fighting leadership

17/1/18

Hackney

Hackney school cleaners strike

17/1/18

RMT

RMT strikes against driver-only operation continue

17/1/18

Yorkshire

Ferrybridge: Workers down tools over unpaid wages

17/1/18

Cuts

We must fight all council cuts!

17/1/18

Socialist Party

Southern Socialist Party conference

16/1/18

Birmingham

Home care workers to strike

12/1/18

Waltham Forest

Outrage against 'monster block' plan

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle17 Jan Corbyn's Labour needs 100% anti-cuts strategy and fight for democracy

triangle17 Jan NHS crisis: under pressure from all angles - end cuts and sell-offs!

triangle17 Jan We must fight all council cuts!

triangle16 Jan Home care workers to strike

triangle15 Jan Carillion crisis: Demand action to save jobs and services

triangle12 Jan Outrage against 'monster block' plan

triangle12 Jan Mini-strike wave continues and intensifies

More ...

triangle23 Jan Bristol North Socialist Party: 'You can't have capitalism without racism' - was Malcolm X correct?

triangle23 Jan Cardiff West Socialist Party: How the Poll Tax was beaten

triangle24 Jan Caerphilly Socialist Party: The Carillion scandal

triangle24 Jan Cardiff Central Socialist Party: Carillion collapse - Watershed moment for public services

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2