There has now been an announcement that three unions will be striking on August 25th and 27th.
This seems to be leading to a delay in introducing the service which by all accounts has just been pushed back although as I write there seems little news as to when the new start date will be.
I’ve been watching the two sides being interviewed on various occasions and I’m finding it difficult to form any sort of opinion as to who is more in the right. Both sides are being economical with the truth and are so political in not actually answering the questions put to them but reply by making some other point.
What I do know is the amazing amount of days holiday the drivers and general staff have already. Tube drivers are paid £49,673 a year for a typical 36 hour week, and enjoy 43 days holiday a year. Station staff are paid £29,000 and get 52 days a year of holiday. The arguments currently seem to be based around the “work-life” balance. From where I sit working 43 days off seems a pretty good balance and I’d find it hard finding something to do if I had 8.6 working weeks off every year. Do they also get bank holidays off as days in lieu???
If I’m looking at the other side of the coin I can understand I’d be a bit annoyed if I suddenly have to start working nights, but surely something has to give for all the benefits?
In Australia when the public transport workers went on strike, they all turned up and the services ran normally but they refused to take any payments from the travellers, thus the strike did not cause chaos, the management made a huge loss but public support was massive. There’s a lesson there somewhere!