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Southern rail strikes: Will the Government step in?

The ongoing dispute between the rail operator Southern and its guards over changes to their role has led to another 24-hour strike this week.

Our political correspondent Phil Hornby, who experienced some of the disruption himself this week, interviewed the Rail Minister Claire Perry and asked her if the Government will step in to resolve the dispute between Southern and the unions - or strip the operator, Govia Thameslink Trains, of its franchise.

Southern rail guards in 24 hr strike over role changes - 900 trains cancelled - 300,000 passengers affected

Southern guards on picket line

Thousands of commuters in the South have once again had to bare the brunt of a bitter dispute on the railways, as a fourth 24-hour strike by train conductors cripples services.

Southern Rail runs two thousand 200 trains a day across Sussex, Hampshire and Surrey. Today 900 trains were cancelled because of the strike affecting the journeys of 300,000 passengers.

There are calls for the Government tonight to step-in and take action. Our Transport Correspondent Mike Pearse reports.

The interviewees are: Mick Cash, RMT General Secretary; and Dyan Crowther, GTR Chief Operating Officer.

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Southern trains & RMT union talks break down over changes to guard role on trains

Train conductors on strike earlier this week

Today's talks to avert further strike action by conductors on Southern trains who belong to the RMT union have broken down.

Conductors walked out on two days this week over plans to change the guard role - and to run driver only trains.

Steve Hedley, the Assistant General Secretary, of the RMT union told ITV Meridian that the managers of Southern had just walked out of the negotiations. He was interviewed by ITV Meridian Transport Correspondent Mike Pearse.

RMT union talks with Southern trains have broken down

Talks aimed at settling the guards dispute at Southern trains broke down a short time ago with the RMT union saying it would "escalate the dispute."

More strike days are expected to be called when the union executive meets next week.

The union say managers "stormed out of the talks" after failing to reach agreement.

The row centres on changes to the role of the guard.

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Southern train conductors to strike in April & May

Southern trains conductors are to strike

The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union has confirmed that it has instructed its members who are conductors on Southern trains not to book on for work between:

  • 11.00 hours on Tuesday 26th April 2016 until 10.59 hours on Wednesday 27th April 2016
  • 11.00 hours on Tuesday 10th May 2016 until 10.59 hours on Wednesday 11th May 2016
  • 11.00 hours on Thursday 12th May 2016 until 10.59 hours on Friday 13th May 2016.

The industrial action is over plans to introduce trains without conductors, otherwise called 'Driver Only Operation' (DDO) services. The union says that the move threatens its members jobs, working conditions and public safety. The call for strikes and other measures follows a union ballot.

Southern train conductors to stage 24-hour strikes

The rail operator wants to introduce conductor-less trains along its routes

Trains conductors working for Southern Rail are expected to hold a number of 24-hour strikes in a row over the introduction of driver-only trains.

The move follows a vote by RMT union members.

Rail conductors vote to take industrial action over jobs

The RMT railworkers' union has said that conductors on Southern rail services have voted by massive majorities to take industrial action.

Southern services are operated by Govia Thameslink Railway. The ballot for a strike and for other non-strike action is over the introduction of Driver Only Operation (DOO) on trains. The union says that operating trains with just a driver - and without conductors - is a move that threatens jobs, conditions and public safety.

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