Socialist Worker

Defend this tube union rep

by Unjum Mirza, senior safety representative, RMT London Underground (pc)
Issue No. 2120

Metronet, the failed tube maintenance consortium that was taken into administration last year, has suspended Andy Littlechild, the RMT union representative for Metronet Rail Infrastructure Services (MRIS).

Andy, a leading member of the National Shop Stewards Network, is now facing disciplinary action from the bosses.

A health and safety risk assessment was carried out relating specifically to a job that Andy does, finding that hard hats must be worn at all times.

Management followed this risk assessment with an “audit” while Andy was on duty and finding him without a hard hat, stood him down and removed him from the site.

On reporting to work on Monday 15 September Andy was removed from site and out onto the street at 3am.

Andy has been a rep at MRIS for 12 years.

He knows, as does management, that risk assessments cannot be carried out without elected trade union safety representatives—in this case Andy himself.

Andy was the secretary of the Metronet strike committee during the strike in September last year.

That strike shook the bosses across all companies on London Underground as Metronet went into administration.

Andy’s branch, London Underground Engineering alongside the London Underground fleet branch, have agreed to ballot for strike action in Andy’s defence.

Andy’s case is a London-wide issue.

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Article information

Tue 23 Sep 2008, 18:04 BST
Issue No. 2120
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