Latest Rail News

19.05.15

Network Rail launches legal challenge to TSSA strike ballot

Network Rail has asked the TSSA to withdraw their notice of strike action due to “numerous defects” in its ballot.

The union’s 3,000 members voted 53% in favour of strike action, and 79% in favour of action short of a strike on 52% turnout.

But now a legal challenge has been issued by Network Rail in an attempt to limit disruption should talks with the unions fail.

A Network Rail spokesperson said: “We have asked the TSSA to withdraw notice of their industrial action as we believe there are numerous defects in their ballot information.

“Network Rail has a responsibility to passengers, freight users and to the country as a whole to do everything we can to avert a strike.

“Talks with the unions continue and we hope to reach a settlement, but we must explore all avenues at our disposal and that includes legal ones.”

The ballot of RMT members has not been challenged.

Manuel Cortes, leader of the TSSA, said: "We are frankly puzzled as to why NR are taking this legal route whilst talks continue today at Acas to solve this dispute and avert next week's strike action."

RTM reported yesterday that Network Rail and the unions were holding last ditch talks with Acas in an effort to avert the strike.

Last night an Acas spokesperson said: "Network Rail and the three trade unions, RMT, TSSA and Unite, met at Acas today for discussions on the current dispute. After six hours of talks, the parties adjourned to reflect on their positions and will reconvene to continue discussions tomorrow, Tuesday, at 10.30am."

Unite has not yet balloted its members for a strike, but a spokesperson told RTM that the union is provisionally planning a ballot for 22 May, but they have yet to inform Network Rail of their intentions.

(Image source: TSSA)

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