‘Yes’ vote in RMT ScotRail ballot

Photo: Craig Maclean

by Voice Reporter • Rail union the RMT confirmed on 7 June that members voted overwhelmingly for both strike action and industrial action short of a strike over the extension of Driver Only Operation (DOO) and Driver Controlled operation (DCO) on ScotRail.

The vote was over 75 per cent for strike action with an even bigger majority for action short of a strike. Turn-out was 75 per cent. The mandate for action will now be considered by the union’s executive. RMT policy is for no extension of DOO on any route or service and for the guard to be in full operational control of the power operated doors.

Furthermore, RMT has made it clear that the union is totally opposed to any proposals for extending DOO, reducing or abolishing the safety role of the Conductor and reducing or abolishing the role of the Conductor in operation of the doors.

ScotRail have been repeatedly informed of RMT’s position and the company have claimed that they accepted the importance of these issues. Additionally, the company were written to in order to seek the necessary assurance that no extension of DOO or DCO would be put in place during the lifetime of the Abellio ScotRail franchise.

Those assurances have not been forthcoming and instead of talking directly to the union Abellio/ScotRail have resorted to targeting individual members through social media and junk mail in a campaign of misinformation which, as this result shows, has backfired spectacularly.

RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said: “This magnificent result shows that our members on ScotRail stand determined and united in this fight for jobs and safety on Scotland’s rail services.

“They have not been fooled by the company dirty tricks and that whole attempt to influence and distort a democratic, secret ballot of the staff has backfired spectacularly.

‎”The workforce know that any extension of DOO or DCO is a clear attack on our members hard earned terms and conditions. RMT members should not have to face the risk of their role and responsibilities being reduced and undermined.

“The workforce also know only too well that there is a very real threat to passengers of watering down and wiping out the safety critical role of the guard on these ScotRail services. ‎That is a lethal gamble with basic rail safety.

“This ballot has demonstrated in the clearest possible way the strength of feeling across the ScotRail network over the threatened extension of Driver Only Operation and the rock-solid mandate for action will now be considered by RMT’s executive. The union remains available for further talks.”

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