City and United fans face yet more railway misery as fresh strikes have been announced — with 20,000 staff set to walk-out.
The RMT union has announced thousands of its members will take industrial action on Friday, June 2. That’s the day before the first-ever all-Manchester FA Cup Final at Wembley.
It means fans trying to get to the capital face very limited options, because train drivers in the ASLEF union will be on strike on the day of the final itself. That includes drivers for Avanti West Coast, the company which runs services from Manchester to London.
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Now, a statement from the RMT has confirmed the extent of the action. It said: “RMT members working for the 14 train companies in the national rail dispute will walkout on Friday, June 2.
“The union found the rail delivery group’s (RDG) previous offer and associated conditions unacceptable and despite contact between the parties since the strike on 13 May, no new proposals have been formulated for the RMT to consider. The strike on June 2 will see 20,000 railway workers in catering, train managers and station staff all take action, affecting train services throughout the country.”
And RMT general secretary Mick Lynch added: “The government is once again not allowing the Rail Delivery Group to make an improved offer that we can consider.
“Therefore, we have to pursue our industrial campaign to win a negotiated settlement on jobs, pay and conditions. Ministers cannot just wish this dispute away.
“They underestimate the strength of feeling our members who have just given us a new six-month strike mandate, continue to support the campaign and the action and are determined to see this through until we get an acceptable resolution.
“The government now needs to unlock the RDG and allow them to make an offer that can be put to a referendum of our members.”
In response, an RDG spokesperson said: “In recent discussions with the RMT, we have continued to stand by the fair, industry-level dispute resolution proposal agreed line by line with their negotiating team, which would have resolved this dispute and given our lowest-paid staff a rise of up to 13 percent.
“By calling more strike action, the RMT leadership have chosen to prolong this dispute without ever giving their members a chance to have a say on their own offer.
“Instead, they will be subject to yet more lost pay through industrial action, customers will suffer more disruption, and the industry will continue to suffer huge damage at a time when the railway is taking more than its fair share from taxpayers to keep trains running post-Covid. We remain open and willing to engage in national-level talks so that we can secure a pay rise for our people and the long-term future of an industry vital to Britain’s economy.”
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