The rail union, RMT, have confirmed a series of strikes in the row over the role of guard on Southern rail trains.
Union bosses say Southern Rail is insistent on removing the safety-trained guards from the trains. It's a critical role that the RMT and disability campaigners say must stay.
The RMT describes the company's decision as a "blatant disregard for the safety and security of passengers and staff alike", leaving it with no alternative but to declare [strike] action"
These strikes are scheduled to take place:
- 00.01 on Tuesday 11th October and 23.59 on Thursday 13th October
- 00.01 on Tuesday 18th October and 23.59 on Thursday 20th October
- 00.01 on Thursday 3rd November and 23.59 on Saturday 5th November
- 00.01 on Tuesday 22nd November and 23.59 on Wednesday 23rd November
- 00.01 on Tuesday 6th December and 23.59 on Thursday 8th December
Here is the RMT's full statement:
An East Sussex MP has accused the government of 'ploughing subsidies into a failing private company' after Transport Secretary Chris Grayling announced £20m of government funding for Southern Rail.
Caroline Lucas, Green MP for Brighton Pavilion, commented about the funding, which is part of a package of measures announced today to improve Southern's performance after months of cancellations and delays.
After months of delays, strikes and misery for passengers, the government has announced a £20m fund to improve Southern Rail services.
The money - from Network Rail - will go towards hiring extra staff at key stations and the faster replacement of worn track. The Department for Transport has demanded rapid improvements and have created a new project Board to oversee the developments. It will be headed by former chief operating officer of Virgin Rail Group, Chris Gibb, who has more than 35 years experience of working in key leadership roles in the rail industry.
The Department for Transport say the key additional benefits of the £20m include:
- £2m to be spent on more rapid response teams to fix faults more quickly, located close to known hotspots;
- £2.5m to be spent on accelerated train maintenance;
- £0.8m investment in extra signal supervisors to keep trains moving across the network;
- £0.9m investment in a series of measures to minimise the impact of bridge strikes.
Rail passengers will face more travel chaos as Southern Railway announce a new 48-hour strike.
The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union say its members will walk out on 7th and 8th September. It's over the long-running row over the role of guards on trains, changes which were imposed from Sunday.
The strikes will come on top of months of disruption to Southern's services because of industrial action and staff shortages.
Passengers have staged demonstrations to protest the level of services.
The company which owns under fire Southern Rail has asked ACAS for fresh talks to try to resolve the on-going industrial dispute.
Govia Thameslink is calling on the union to call off it's five day strike by conductors due to start next month.
Rail passengers who use Southern and Thameslink services are facing more misery after the rail Union RMT decided to ballot hundreds of ticket office staff for strike action.
The union says GTR, which owns the companies, wants to close ticket offices and cut 130 jobs.
The new action is on top of the chaos being caused by an on-going dispute over the roll of guards.
Under the plan new roles of Station Hosts will be created that will see staff removed from ticket offices and sent onto platforms to assist passengers and sell tickets.
GTR insists it is the best use of staff time and will improve services for passengers.
Rail unions say we're on the edge of a disaster. MPs say there could be serious injuries - or worse. The Mayor of London says Southern should be stripped of its franchise.
And the tens of thousands of commuters caught up in the chaos of delays in Sussex - and the closure of Brighton station last night - say the situation has become intolerable.
It's been a long dispute between Southern Rail and the unions. And, the delays and overcrowding are getting worse.
Malcolm Shaw heard from passenger Pam Roach, and Sadiq Khan, Mayor of London.
Out with the old, and in the with the new. Goodbye to the EU, and hello to the vicar's daughter from Sussex - the Maidenhead MP, Theresa May. So much has happened on the political scene in the last three weeks. Whoever thought in June, that it would be May in July ?
On this month's Last Word, Helen Whately MP, the Faversham & Mid Kent Conservative; Anneliese Dodds MEP, the Labour euro-MP for South East England; and Tim Loughton MP, who represents the Conservatives in Worthing East & Shoreham debate what a Theresa May Government will look like. And they look at the future of the Labour Party as challengers emerge to Jeremy Corbyn's leadership.
The MP for Horsham, Jeremy Quin, has been holding a public meeting this morning about rail services in his constituency.
The Conservative politician raised the issue in the House of Commons at Prime Minister's Question Time on 29th June. His constituency is served by Southern trains, the firm at the centre of a row with the RMT union over planned changes to the role of guards. There have been a number of strikes by workers, and on Monday the rail operator is due to introduce an emergency timetable which includes cancelling 341 trains a day.
Ahead of today's meeting, the MP said:
Southern passengers are to hold a new protest about the current state of services. It will be held at Victoria on Monday evening as the company introduce 341 cuts to services.
Passengers say it is simply not good enough to cut trains which will lead to more crowding.
The company say it will better inform passengers about what services are more likely to run.
The dispute centres on the role of the guard.