×
Newsmax TV & Webwww.newsmax.comFREE - In Google Play
VIEW
×
Newsmax TV & Webwww.newsmax.comFREE - On the App Store
VIEW
Tags: Britain | Rail Strikes

Last-ditch Talks Aim to Avert Disruptive UK Rail Strike

Monday, 20 June 2022 05:00 AM EDT

LONDON (AP) — Unions and train companies in Britain are set to hold last-minute talks Monday amid fading hopes of averting the country’s biggest rail strikes for decades.

Up to 40,000 cleaners, signalers, maintenance workers and station staff are due to walk out for three days this week, on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, in a dispute over pay and job security at a time of soaring inflation.

The strike is expected to shut down the rail network across the country, with London Underground subway services also hit by a walkout on Tuesday.

Millions of people in Britain, like those across Europe, are seeing their cost of living soar. Salaries have not kept pace with inflation, which has hit 9% and is forecast to rise further, as Russia’s war in Ukraine squeezes supplies of energy and food staples including wheat. Prices were already rising before the war, as the global economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic fueled strong consumer demand.

At the same time, U.K. passenger numbers remain below pre-pandemic levels and train companies are seeking to cut costs and staffing.

Talks on resolving the dispute have faltered, and unions are calling on the government to get involved. They accuse Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservative administration of standing on the sidelines so it can blame unions, and the left-of-center opposition Labour Party, for the disruption.

Unions say the government, which sets the rules for train companies and owns infrastructure operator Network Rail, has not given the firms enough flexibility to offer a substantial pay increase.

Treasury minister Simon Clarke said “this is a matter between the employers — the train operating companies and Network Rail — and the trade unions.”

He said workers should get “a sensible pay increase,” but that too big a raise would spark a wage-price spiral driving inflation even higher.

Rail, Maritime and Transport Union General Secretary Mick Lynch said he expected other sectors to strike later this year.

“I think there are going to be many unions that are balloting across the country because people can’t take it anymore,” he told Sky News. We’ve got people doing full-time jobs who are having to take state benefits and use food banks. That is a national disgrace.”

© Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


GlobalTalk
Unions and train companies in Britain are set to hold last-minute talks Monday amid fading hopes of averting the country's biggest rail strikes for decades.Up to 40,000 cleaners, signalers, maintenance workers and station staff are due to walk out for three days this week,...
Britain,Rail Strikes
366
2022-00-20
Monday, 20 June 2022 05:00 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.

Sign up for Newsmax’s Daily Newsletter

Receive breaking news and original analysis - sent right to your inbox.

(Optional for Local News)
Privacy: We never share your email address.
Join the Newsmax Community
Read and Post Comments
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
 
 
TOP

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved
NEWSMAX.COM
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved