‘I’m fighting for my job’: Railway workers head to the picket line for second day of industrial action

Railway workers have set up picket lines across the south of the capital for a second day of national railway worker strike action.

The capital’s transport network ground to a halt on Tuesday, the first day of action, and on Wednesday the RMT union confirmed another day of action would take place the next day after a breakdown in talks with the Government.

Workers at London Bridge formed a picket line outside the railway station this morning.

RMT union members have been told not to speak to the press, but two workers who wished to remain anonymous did tell us that they were striking over “terms and conditions, safety of staff, redundancies, pay and pensions”.

One worker, who lives in South London and has been a railway worker for more than 20 years, said he was “just about managing” with his level of pay in the cost of living crisis.

“We’re all struggling,” he said. “The cost of living has rocketed and we’ve not had a pay rise since 2019, even though we worked all through Covid.

“I’m fighting for my job, I don’t want to be on the dole. We’re showing a united front to everyone in a similar position that there’s power out there.”

One of the key concerns this worker had was being made redundant, which the RMT says at least 2,900 of its members nationally are in danger of.

A customer service worker at London Bridge railway station said she had never been on strike before but was “terrified” of losing her pension.

RMT union said Network Rail, the worker’s employers, plans to slash its members’ pensions.

The customer service worker added: “The last thing you want you want attacked is your pension. I’ve been working since I was 13 years old. Our employers won’t be all over happy but they know we have a right to strike. No one wants to go on strike, it’s not good for us or our passengers.”

A spokesman for Network Rail said: “We are disappointed that the RMT have again chosen to walk away from negotiations without agreeing a deal. We remain available for talks – day or night – and will do everything we can to avoid further disruption for our passengers.”

Pictured top: A picket line at London Bridge railway station this morning (Picture: James Twomey)




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