The rail union RMT today demanded ‘urgent assurances’ from London Midland over compulsory redundancies and adherence to procedure over plans to ‘slash the opening hours at 86 out of 90 ticket offices and close nine ticket offices in their entirety putting 350 staff on the “at risk” list’.
RMT has written to the company making it clear that if the assurances are not forthcoming it will lead to a dispute situation and a ballot for industrial action.
Regional transport organisation Centro have already opposed the planned cuts and RMT is running a high profile political and public campaign aimed at stopping the proposals in their tracks.
Passenger Focus, who have also raised formal objections to the London Midland proposals, received a massive 18,000 statutory responses from members of the public during the consultation opposing the closures of services.
RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said:
“The cuts plans put forward by London Midland would turn stations into a muggers and vandals paradise and yet despite the massive public and political objections they are bulldozing ahead, totally ignoring the consultation process.
“As a result, 350 staff are left with an axe hanging over their heads and services supported overwhelmingly by the travelling public remain under threat, all in the name of maximizing company profits.
“We will not tolerate the company’s total disregard for agreed procedures and if we are forced to ballot for action to defend our members we will have no hesitation in making that recommendation.
“The unions are not only concerned about the impact on jobs but also the dire consequences for services and security together with access for older people, those with disabilities and parents with prams.”