RMT has confirmed second Merseyrail strike will be on April 8 the same day as Grand National
The RMT has announced that its guards’ members will strike on Saturday 8 April, the high point of the Grand National.
The global event attracts tens of thousands of people into Liverpool.
Drivers and guards will strike for 24 hours between 00.01am and 23.59pm on Saturday 8th April 2017.
In addition, the RMT union says it will be stepping up the campaign, involving the general public and targeting politicians across the area served by Merseyrail, aimed at maximising political and public support for RMT’s fight for a guaranteed guard on the company’s services.
Jan Chaudhry-van der Velde, Merseyrail’s managing director slammed the RMT for the move, he said:
As we predicted, the RMT has sunk to a new low by inflicting their strikes on the Grand National. Damaging the company and its passengers is one thing, but damaging the whole of the Liverpool city region on one of its proudest and most important days of the year is impossible to understand.
It cannot be right that the RMT executive, sitting in London, has taken an unnecessary decision that represents a barefaced attack on the reputation of our region.
The Saturday of the Grand National is one of our busiest times of the year, and we will make every attempt to ensure that we successfully move around the high volumes of people who choose to travel with us that day. Timetables for the day are currently being developed and will be published very soon.
We have put forward firm proposals about how we will look after our guards, who, subject to successful negotiations with the RMT, are being guaranteed work in the business, once the new trains are introduced in three years’ time.
RMT General secretary Mick Cash blamed Mersey rail for the latest strike, he said:
It is disgraceful that Merseyrail wrecked a golden opportunity to engage in serious talks with the union yesterday.
RMT reps set out key points for discussion that could have moved the dispute forwards, Merseyrail kicked that conciliatory approach back in our faces and made it crystal clear that all that they are interested in is the union signing a surrender document which gives them a free hand to rip apart the safety culture on the railway.
Merseyrail is in dispute with the RMT union which represents many Merseyrail guards.
The dispute is about staffing arrangements on the new trains, which will be introduced on to the network in 2020.
The new trains, being bought by Merseytravel, have some of the most advanced and innovative safety features seen in the UK and there will be significant enhancements for passengers the company says.
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