SWR Longest Strike - December 2019

Discussion in 'UK Railway Discussion' started by theironroad, 2 Dec 2019.

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  1. Carlisle

    Carlisle Established Member

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    Where have they done that? Southern did involve several drivers strikes & since then so far only Grater Anglia has actually extended DCO which was with full consent of the RMT
     
    Last edited: 24 Dec 2019
  2. Horizon22

    Horizon22 Member

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    Ultimately depends what the resolution is / will be. Would be interesting to see how morale is on Southern for all involved now some time has passed. Granted a lot of the OBS are brand new to the railway.
     
  3. Bigfoot

    Bigfoot Member

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    Very similar at my depot too. There's always a few on the fringes, but on the whole it's very supportive in both directions.
     
  4. Journeyman

    Journeyman Established Member

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    There's evidence about that some more militant RMT activists are angry that ASLEF are more willing to accept extensions of DOO/DCO, but there's bit of a conflict of interest here, and it isn't easy to resolve. Drivers potentially benefit from it, guards obviously don't. Quite how you sort that out amicably, I have no idea.
     
  5. Carlisle

    Carlisle Established Member

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    There were long winded negotiations at ACAS with Merseyrail & also with WMR & SWR to try and agree a way forward beneficial to all sides, & I also recall Mr Grayling offering the union a form of job guarantee for future franchises, but they all ultimately broke up without agreement, so if things get nasty I guess management may have reasonable grounds to claim they tried as much as they could, but whether the public at large or media would buy into such claims I’ve no idea
     
    Last edited: 24 Dec 2019
  6. Journeyman

    Journeyman Established Member

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    Exactly, it isn't easy. We live in a world that's changing rapidly, and I have no doubt whatsoever that the railway needs to adapt and change, but there's a lot of resistance to that.

    I can see this from all sides, and there's no way all of them are going to get everything they want.
     
  7. Goldfish62

    Goldfish62 Established Member

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    We have to remember that RMT has already won important concessions in that guards will remain safety critical and no train will operate in service without a guard. That's more than they got from Southern, which was absolutely nothing.

    Personally I think RMT made a strategic error not settling on this basis (ie same as the GA deal). Given that SWR have refused twice to new talks during the current strike they are clearly not going to budge. The danger for staff is that SWR's next step may be to give 90 days notice and issue new contracts that do not include some the concessions they've already made.
     
  8. WA_Driver

    WA_Driver Member

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    What we (drivers) got to realise DOO has been in operation for last 25/30 years on most of the other rail networks.

    DOO(P) is in SWT/SWR drivers T&Cs.

    DCO/DOO is coming. MTR are directing First Group in the negotiations, MTR want the suburban services and want DOO.

    ASLEF stance is all the time SWR are dealing with RMT there is no need to get involved. ASLEF have said no more one year pay deals. Both want a multi year pay deals and ASLEF have conceded that operating methods have to change
     
  9. Economist

    Economist Member

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    I thought MTR only had a 30% stake, sounds like the tail wagging the dog a bit if you ask me...

    I don't necessarily think that ASLEF should go for a strike, especially since they've already given up DOO(P) in their T&Cs. I think a rest day/DI ban on pay grounds plus an indemnity against dismissal/prosecution for their members on DOO matters would be the best they could hope for.

    I think the unions will simply have to try and weather out the next five years and hope Labour can get in next time and bring the guard role back. An all-out strike plays right into the government's hands, lesser industrial action can be laid at the feet of the TOC.
     
  10. LowLevel

    LowLevel Established Member

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    With approximately one or two exceptions on each side it's the same with us. We are still reasonably traditional in that guards, drivers, station staff, fitters and shunters from the nearby depot etc all generally get along and often socialise together - even the contract staff like security guards and trolley hosts are included in that.

    I do find myself trying to work out if it's the exception rather than the rule nowadays though.

    It helps being the size of company that at the very least I would say I know every driver I work with by name regardless of depot.
     
  11. dctraindriver

    dctraindriver Member

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    I’d hazard a guess that with an 80 majority, I think the Tories will be in power for the next 10.....
     
  12. theironroad

    theironroad Established Member

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    Sure, absolutely. I should have been clearer. I don't think for a minute there is all out war between grades and, at my depot , there is a lot of moral and often financial support towards guards on strike. Whatever the outcome ofnthe swr dispute, I hope that will continue.
     
  13. Goldfish62

    Goldfish62 Established Member

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    I seriously cannot see Labour pledging to bring back guards again, unless it remains in the grip of Corbynism. It was a purely populist policy to try to get the RMT on side and garner votes from railway staff. It's a non-issue to most of the population, who never travel by train.
     
  14. Journeyman

    Journeyman Established Member

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    It was one of the things that made me think Labour had lost the plot. It's exactly the sort of thing that government shouldn't be legislating on. It has a responsibility to ensure workers are treated fairly, yes. It has a responsibility to ensure the railways are run safely, yes. But...micromanagement of this level heralded a return to an era of big government that many of us don't want back. It would tie the hands of management far too much to be so prescriptive.
     
  15. pethadine82

    pethadine82 Member

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    How are guards a safety issue. Tube trains in the peak carry far more passengers and dont have that many serious incidents. Also how many times are tickets checked, when I used to commute my season ticket very very rarely got inspected and the guard just sat reading the paper in the middle bit of the cab on SWT
     
  16. Ethano92

    Ethano92 Member

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    I think RMT considers them a safety issue in 2 aspects

    1) they believe a guard must have a role in dispatch. This could be so they are vital to the running of the service and can't be gotten rid off, or they genuinely just believe DOO cameras aren't as safe and it's better to have eyes from the platform rather than in a cab (which RAIB has explained isn't the case, both methods are safe)

    2) obvious one being safe evacuations of trains which I guess could be considered more prominent on 3rd rail territory.

    I think it could be considered a positive to have a presence on the train other than the driver in the form of OBS/guard/whatever but I think the more general feel of SWR commuters both before and during this strike is that they couldn't care less as 'they don't often see the guard' which is a phrase said embarrassingly often on part of the guards IMO.

    Just how busy were final services today? I understand staff deserve to get home for Christmas but the tube appears to still be operating even at this time but I understand that's a separate operation.
     
  17. the sniper

    the sniper Established Member

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    By your thinking WMT Guards would have settled for a far worse deal than was achieved. The acceptance of the GA deal was a badly timed and undermined the Guards position nationwide. SWT/SWR Guards were the pioneers of the resistance against DOO in the privatised era, I'll be surprised if they settle for anything less than the same deal WMT got.
     
  18. Goldfish62

    Goldfish62 Established Member

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    Are you sure you've actually understood what I wrote? SWR don't need the guards to settle for anything. They can dismiss and re-employ on their terms, Southern-fashion.
     
  19. Carlisle

    Carlisle Established Member

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    Not really , a GA style deal would’ve ended all related disputes nearly 2 years ago so the industry wouldn’t likely be facing new strike laws either, with drivers & possibly other grades also losing some leverage despite a far more responsible attitude towards strikes in recent times.
     
    Last edited: 25 Dec 2019
  20. the sniper

    the sniper Established Member

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    Anything is possible. It'd be interesting to see what ASLEF do under those circumstances.

    It'd have settled it for you, but evidently not the members.

    There's no point in having a right to strike if you aren't going to use it in the event of a dispute that involves defending a fundamental position of the union/members. If they'd all have just accepted a GA deal, striking in future would have been irrelevant anyway.

    It's easy to have a more 'responsible attitude towards strikes' when you're ASLEF, with guaranteed long term job security for your members, near absolute power in most TOC, merely asked by fearful management to name your price for taking on any responsibilities they've been able to prise off other grades... Let's see how reasonable you think ASLEF are when the new Deep Tube Upgrade Programme stock comes about.
     
  21. RealTrains07

    RealTrains07 On Moderation

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    Wont be the case much longer once the government forces TOCs to run mininum service during strikes
     
  22. Carlisle

    Carlisle Established Member

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    I’ve been on the driverless metro line in Budapest, so when similar technology finally arrives here I don’t they’ll have much choice other than to be reasonable
     
  23. the sniper

    the sniper Established Member

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    Well that's that then. You've ridden these trains?! On that evidence, I'm sure they'll go down quietly. You should let them know it's over, they're very reasonable chaps.

    Merry Christmas all, that's enough fun for now. :lol:
     
  24. Carlisle

    Carlisle Established Member

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    Once a particular technology becomes proven, affordable & available capable of replacing traditionally human preformed tasks either entirely or mostly, history has, so far, in pretty much every instance I can think of, demonstrated that it’ll end up being widely utilised, protest or no protest.
    Alternatively it’s argued we’ve entered a new era where organisations & pressure groups perhaps previously sidelined as merely representative of minority or fringe interests are now significantly more influential,
    So who knows?
    Merry Christmas :s
     
    Last edited: 26 Dec 2019
  25. Goldfish62

    Goldfish62 Established Member

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    Some interesting points here.

    I agree that there's no point in having a right to strike if you aren't prepared to use it (see "nuclear deterrent"), but they've achieved substantial concessions through its use already, ie safety critical guards on all trains, which guarantees jobs and status.

    Re ASLEF, I agree to an extent, although I'd also argue that RMT members also have far greater job security than most workers outside the rail industry. Strike for a month at many companies and there wouldn't be a company left to go back to. Then there's the Liverpool dockers and the London bus workers in the 1950s who striked themselves out of jobs. Of course, this will never happen on today's railways as UK taxpayers, most of whom never use trains, will be there to prop up the railways in seemingly all circumstances. If the strikes persist the only adverse impact I can see is some the proposed off-peak frequency enhancements being shelved, but that doesn't affect existing staff.

    Regarding the Deep Tube Upgrade Programme, any pretence of driverless operation went with the last mayor. The trains aren't even going to be ATO as the Piccadilly line signalling upgrade has been cancelled due to lack of funding.
     
  26. pompeyfan

    pompeyfan Established Member

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    With Guildford - Haslemere shut until New Years, I’m surprised to see there’s no direct service to Portsmouth via Basingstoke, with 1Txx services still terminating at Winchester. Seems an odd choice, even with route knowledge limitations of management guards.

    I assume they’ll use the time to fix the land slip at Sand Tunnel?
     
  27. nickw1

    nickw1 Member

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    Don't forget that:

    a) likely adverse affects of Brexit are likely to turn people against them, when people finally realise it won't magically solve all their problems;

    b) Though I do not agree with them, a lot of people in this country appear to dislike Jeremy Corbyn more than Johnson. GIven that Johnson is deeply unpopular with much of the population, some other Labour leader could easily be more attractive to the electorate than Johnson.

    c) IIRC if there had been a snap election in 1990, the Tories would have lost big time. It was only that they replaced Thatcher with the more middle-of-the-road John Major that they won 1992. I suspect Johnson will suffer a similar fate to Thatcher in the late 80s (if we compare now to 1987) and they'll only win the next election if they can find someone more MOR - though unfortunately all the MOR Tories seem to have jumped ship.

    As long as Labour doesn't make any bad decisions, I think they could easily win a May 2024 election, who knows, maybe sooner if things really get bad in the next 18 months to 2 years and the sequence of elections in every odd-numbered year continues - not implausible as I suspect 2021 will be the year when the s*** hits the fan.
     
  28. yorkie

    yorkie Forum Staff Staff Member Administrator

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    Just a gentle reminder this is a UK Railways discussion thread about the SWR strike.

    If anyone wishes to discuss anything else, please ensure you post in a different thread (either by using an existing one, or by creating a new one if there isn't) in the appropriate forum section.

    If you wish to reply to an off topic post, please do so in a suitably titled thread (feel free to link to your reply from the original topic, but please do not continue off topic discussion in the wrong thread)

    Thanks :)
     
  29. HamworthyGoods

    HamworthyGoods Member

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    There’s still a requirement to run a service between Waterloo and Guildford and Haslemere and Pompey which means there aren’t enough non union/management guards to cover that and starting the Basingstoke/Pompeys back from Waterloo.
     
  30. pompeyfan

    pompeyfan Established Member

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    I suppose that makes sense, it must be quite inefficient having to work round a big block like that. I hope Southern are strengthening their services, they’re going to need to!!
     
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