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Unions to shut down DLR for 48-hour strike starting tomorrow

Staff across all grades on the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) will walk out for 48 hours from early tomorrow after talks between the union and the operator, KeolisAmey. failed once again earlier today (2 November).

RMT confirmed the strike action after, according to the union, KeolisAmey “refused to address concerns” on agency staff, imposition of changes to the control centre managing movement and power, and risk assessment and safety issues of both workers and commuters.

When balloted, 93% of union members who voted backed a strike (315 votes to 24 against), which will run from from 3 to 5 November, with action starting and finishing at 4am.

Its general secretary, Mick Cash, said: “RMT negotiators have made every effort over the past 72 hours to resolve this dispute through negotiation but due to the sheer intransigence of the management, the DLr will now face its first ever all-out strike action in the 28 years history of the railway.

“The responsibility for the massive disruption that will kick in from early tomorrow morning is entirely down to the aggressive and bullying attitude of the new KAD [KeolisAmey Docklands] management who don’t seem to understand the basic principles of industrial relations. The union remains available for further meaningful talks.”

Transport for London (TfL) has already announced plans to enhance bus services that connect key DLR stations to the Tube, but warned that Underground line services will be much busier than usual.

Rory O’Neill, TfL’s director of DLR, said it is unlikely that any DLR services will run, but other rail services will be operating as normal.

He added: “We are disappointed that strike action called by the RMT leadership is causing disruption to DLR customers. The only way to resolve their dispute with KeolisAmey Docklands, who operate the DLR on our behalf, is through meaningful discussion rather than unnecessary strike action.

“We have put on extra buses, on existing bus routes, that operate along the DLR route and staff will also be available to help. We ask customers who are able to, to consider avoiding the busiest times if they can.”

The union had previously planned a two-day strike on the DLR in January as part of a dispute over the outsourcing of maintenance work, but it was called off after both parties secured an agreement. The RMT was also in frequent disputes with KAD’s predecessor as operator, Serco, in previous years.

(Top image c. TfL)


Terry K   04/11/2015 at 13:08

I can understand the Unions frustration when any type of work/operation is put out to Agency staff, Many NOT ALL of the Agency staff are not fully qualified to carry out the roles that they are being used on and this should be a cause for concern not just on DLR but all rail systems.

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