Tube strike ahead of polling day in blow to Sadiq Khan's election campaign

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Tube drivers' union Aslef today dealt a blow to Sadiq Khan's election campaign by announcing a strike ahead of polling day.

The drivers plan to walk out on Monday April 8th in a long-running dispute over terms and conditions.

A second strike is planned for Saturday May 4th - the day the results of the mayoral election are due to be announced.

In a separate dispute Aslef train drivers on some of the capital's busiest commuter lines will stage a one day strike to coincide with industrial action on the TUbe on April 8th.

The action will hit services on c2c, Greater Anglia, Great Northern, Thameslink, Southern, Gatwick Express, Southeastern and South Western Railway.

Tube workers recently abandoned a series of strikes over pay after the mayor used £30m of council taxypayers cash to bankaroll an improved offer.

Aslef London Underground organiser Finn Brennan said: "Despite a previous commitment to withdraw plans for massive changes to drivers’ working conditions, London Underground management has established a full-time team of managers preparing to impose their plans.

"They want drivers to work longer shifts, spending up to 25% more time in the cab, and to remove all current working agreements in the name of 'flexibility and efficiency'."

The union accused London Underground bosses of broken promises over plans to make driver's cabs more secure and guarantees about the number of transport police on duty during the Night Tube.

The dispute has lasted more than a year. Drivers staged an earlier strike in March 2023.

Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall said: "Clearly Sadiq Khan's £30 million bung to stop the trade unions from striking wasn't enough, and now Londoners face even more disruption."

She added: "We have had over 100 strikes under Sadiq Khan, after he promised zero."

A London Labour spokesperson said: "Strikes are bad news for everyone and the Mayor urges ASLEF and TfL to continue talks to find a resolution to this dispute, and prevent this potential disruption to Londoners."

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