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RMT Union postpone rail strikes following Manchester attack

RMT union have suspended a planned 24-hour strike Credit: ITV Border

Transport union, RMT union, have announced the suspension of planned strike action on Merseyrail, Northern rail and Southern rail, following the bombing at a music concert in Manchester.

The 24-hour strike was due to take place on Tuesday, 30 May.

In light of the horrific bombing in Manchester last night, and the heightened safety and security alerts on our transport services, RMT’s executive has taken the decision to suspend the 24 hours of strike action scheduled for Tuesday 30th May on Merseyrail, Northern Rail and Southern Rail.

Our thoughts and solidarity at this time are with the people of Manchester.

– Mick Cash, RMT General Secretary

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Rail workers take action in Carlisle

RMT Union workers at another strike Credit: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Rail workers in Carlisle participated in a Union "day of action" between 7am and 9am this morning.

They are joining staff across the north in a campaign to have a publicly owned system in the region.

The RMT Union claims jobs, services, and safety are at risk if franchises are awarded to companies outside the UK.

Failures are costing taxpayer £451m: RMT claim

In the wake of the cancelled franchise for the West Coast Main Line, one leading rail union claims almost half of the existing franchises are now receiving public bailouts.

The RMT claim 8 of the 19 franchises are being subsidised by the taxpayer and are calling for the full renationalisation of the railways.

The union also claims that revenue support payments made to train companies has increased from £290 million a year to more than £450 million.

"The expensive shambles of rail franchising extends well beyond the fiasco on the West Coast mainline as these figures show that a majority of the UK's rail routes will soon be on corporate welfare due to a mixture of bogus train operator projections and government and departmental incompetence.

"Hundreds of millions of pounds that could go towards improving our railways or keeping down fares is being soaked up by this racket which is lining the pockets of the private rail companies at taxpayers' expense."

– Bob Crow RMT General Secretary

The Department for Transport has suspended 3 members of staff over flaws in the franchise bidding process for the West Coast Main Line. A full investigation is now taking place and department officials are declining to make any other comments.