Home / Lead News / Tube strike January 2016 cancelled: Union calls off this week’s walkout over Night Tube at last minute

Tube strike January 2016 cancelled: Union calls off this week’s walkout over Night Tube at last minute

34The 24-hour Tube strike due to start tomorrow evening and last most of Wednesday was dramatically called off this afternoon.
Leaders of the RMT decided to suspend the strike after receiving a revised offer from London Underground (LU) in the bitter Night Tube and pay dispute.
All other Tube unions decided last week to suspend the strikes to allow further negotiations to take place.

The RMT declared it needed more time to discuss the offer. The decision to call off the strike – which would have caused widespread disruption across the entire network – followed a mass meeting today of RMT reps near Euston.
But although tomorrow’s strike is off, two more 24-hour walkouts scheduled for next month remain on the cards, pending further talks.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “RMT’s executive has agreed to suspend tomorrow’s action over pay and night tube to allow for further consideration and consultation on the current offer.
“The union makes it clear that we remain in dispute and the strike action scheduled for February remains on.
“RMT also remains in dispute over station staffing and the week of action on that issue, scheduled to begin from the seventh of February, also remains on and the union is finalising the details for the continuation of that industrial campaign and the on-going fight over the threat to jobs, services and safety.”
Finn Brennan, LU organiser for Aslef, the train drivers’ union, said it had dragged Tube bosses “kicking and screaming into the 21st century with an agreement to deliver modern, flexible working practices for our members and an above inflation pay rise.”
Night Tube should have begun operation on 12 September last year but agreement could not be reached with the unions over pay and working conditions.
When it does eventually start, trains will run 24 hours on Fridays and Saturdays along the entire Jubilee and Victoria lines.
On the Central line they will operate between Ealing Broadway and Loughton/Hainault; on the Northern line trains will run the entire route except on the Mill Hill East and Bank branches; on the Piccadilly line the service will operate between Cockfosters and Heathrow Terminal 5.
The hugely complex dispute is over pay, safety, shift patterns, time off, staffing levels and many other issues. It became further complicated when Tube bosses lumped the Night Tube dispute with the annual pay claim saying staff could not have one without the other. Unions said this was “blackmail.”
LU is hiring hundreds of part-time staff, including drivers besides other grades, both to run the Night Tube and break the stranglehold of the unions.
The revised LU offer consists of:
2015: 1% pay rise, backdated to April last year, plus £500 consolidated on all salaries
2016: RPI or 1% whichever the greater
2017: RPI or 1% whichever the greater
2018: RPI plus 0.25% or 1% whichever the greater
A one-off payment of £500, non-consolidated, to all staff who deliver Night Tube at its launch
Station staff will receive a one-off payment of £500, non-consolidated, upon the implementation of the Fit for the Future stations programme; this includes major changes and the axing of ticket offices.
There will also be further discussions on the implementation of a 36-hour four day week initially involving “trials” on the Jubilee line.
Next month’s 24-hour strikes are due to take place from the evenings of Monday 15 February and Wednesday 17 February.
If they go ahead it will mean huge disruption on the days after the start – all day Tuesdsay 16 February and Thursday 18 February.
In addition the union has not called off an entrire week of industrial action by station staff that is due to begin from Sunday 7 February.
The exact nature of what this will be had not been detailed by the union.
Unions and management will now take part in more extensive negotiations – again likely to take place at Acas, the conciliation service