Socialist Worker

Network Rail strikes could win more than bosses' offer

by Raymie Kiernan
Issue No. 2455

The RMT and TSSA unions suspended industrial action set for Monday and Tuesday of this week at Network Rail after bosses made a new offer. 

Up to 25,000 workers were set to join the action that could have stopped 90 percent of trains running.

Bosses offered a consolidated 1 percent pay increase for this year, backdated to 1 January with a guaranteed minimum increase of £250, and 1.4 percent for next year. This followed four days of talks.

The strike was called after workers rejected an initial offer of a zero rise for this year then rate of inflation increases for three years of a four-year deal. 

A second offer was also rejected which pledged inflation at the RPI rate with a £500 lump sum for this year.

There wouldn’t have been an improved offer without the threat of a strike. But many workers may question if it is worth calling off the action for the new deal. 

No offer on pay has been made for 2017 and 2018. 

And Network Rail is still only guaranteeing no compulsory redundancies until December next year. 

Bosses intend to cut jobs in the future. A national strike could have won better commitments on jobs. 

Union reps were set to meet on Thursday of this week to consult on the offer.

Network Rail workers can win more by delivering solid action. 

The offer barely keeps their pay ahead of official figures for the cost of living.


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