Manchester Metrolink workers to strike

Metrolink workers to strike Credit: PA

UNITE The Union has announced that more than 200 workers on Greater Manchester’s Metrolink system will strike over four days early next month in a dispute over pay.

Union members will strike from 9 pm on Friday 7 June until 05:59 am on Monday 10 June. The union says that members have voted by 96 per cent for strike action.

The union says it is calling for constructive talks with the employer Keolis Amey Metrolink Ltd to resolve the dispute that will bring the system to a halt - it will clash with the sold-out Parklife Festival over the same weekend.

The company, which runs Metrolink on behalf of Transport for Greater Manchester, has offered between one and five per cent for the year starting January 2019 depending on which group a worker belongs.

The company has adopted a ‘divide and rule’ policy in offering different pay rises to separate groups which we won’t tolerate – we are seeking a substantial pay rise for all our non-driver members. The company has also tied in any offer to a serious erosion of current employment conditions. The bosses are expecting a lot for their current offer including a worsening of unsocial hours working and new rosters impacting on our members’ work/life balance. We are calling out the network controllers across the 62 mile system and without them the whole network will grind to a halt very quickly. We appreciate that the strike action is taking place during the popular Parklife Festival and travel disruption is on cards for festival goers – that’s why we are calling for urgent talks with the management to reach a fair settlement before the bands start playing.

– Steve Davies, UNITE The Union

We’re disappointed that Unite have notified us of their intention to take strike action during Parklife weekend and we’re sorry for the disruption that will cause to customers if they go ahead with a strike.

KAM is doing all we can to put robust contingency plans in place for alternative transport and we will give clear information to customers as early as possible.

We have already held discussions with Unite, supported by ACAS, in an attempt to find a resolution and we remain committed to the success of these talks.

– Aline Frantzen, KeolisAmey Metrolink (KAM), who operate Metrolink for TfGM