LU statement as RMT confirms strike suspended
Phil Hufton, Chief Operating Officer of London Underground, said:
`I am pleased that Londoners will not have to endure unnecessary strike action next week.
`Although it was not made clear why the RMT called for strike action on Monday evening, we met with them at ACAS yesterday and the good news is that, by providing some basic clarity, the threatened strike and the current overtime ban have now been withdrawn.
`Nothing positive would be achieved through this strike action and this threat had no logic to it what so ever apart from attempting to disrupt hard working Londoners and their members losing two days pay. By simply continuing to talk without imposing unnecessary threats is obviously the best solution, which is recognised by the other trades unions.
`We have held over eighty meetings in the past eleven months with the Trade Unions and we've already seen good progress through the process of consultation, including the number of post reductions falling from 953 to 897. We anticipate this will reduce even further through the process of continued discussions and local consultation.
`We have adhered to every single one of the commitments we made to our staff, including delivering on our guarantee of no compulsory redundancies and offering a job for anyone who wants to stay with us with no loss of pay. "We will continue to consult with staff and trades unions while we implement our proposals to modernise and improve the Tube service for our customers. In future we will have more staff than ever before visible and available to help our customers buy the right ticket or use their contactless payment card, plan their journeys and keep them safe and secure.'
The form of words agreed at ACAS yesterday which led to the suspension of the strike is as follows:
1.a) Consultation and discussions will continue through the implementation phase of Fit for the Future - Stations
2. Consultation to date has resulted in the number of post reductions falling from 953 to 897; it is anticipated it will reduce further, as a result of continued discussions.
3. The salary and location guarantee applies to all station staff including those who have a medical restriction confirmed by London Underground Occupational Health at the point of mapping into a new role under Fit for the Future - Stations.
Modernisation of the Tube means that it is our intention to close all ticket offices, used in less than 3 per cent of journeys, and instead deliver a vastly better customer service by bringing more staff than ever before out on to the concourses of stations at ticket machines, ticket gates and platforms - just as we delivered during the London 2012 Games. This will also allow us to save £50 million per annum to reinvest in better and more reliable train services and to keep fares down.