Thousands of tube workers have brought London to a standstill with strike action against TfL cuts. Counterfire members report from the picket lines
London Bridge - Cici Washburn
The picket line was solid at London Bridge this morning. Many came to show their solidarity including National Rail workers. Talking to the strikers it was clear that spirits are really high and they are very pleased with how the strike is going. RMT Jubilee South branch chair Jane Gwynn said,
“Todays been very solid, we’ve had a lot of support from other workers. We’re out here with members of the public. This is not a crisis that we’ve caused and workers should not have to pay for it with their pensions or their jobs.”
Leytonstone station - Carole Vincent
RMT members commenced strike action today as part of an on going dispute against TfL cuts. I was at Leytonstone Station joining the picket line today, where I spoke to Jason Moriarty, Central Line East Branch Secretary who told me,
“We are taking action to defend 600 positions and our hard-won terms and conditions and the destruction of our pensions. This round of cuts represents a fraction of the cuts coming our way, caused by the new Tory funding agreements imposed by them. The Mayor, Sadiq Khan has failed to fight for proper long term funding for London Transport Networks and we'll keep fighting.”
Brixton - Peter Bird
Resolute strikers from the RMT union stood outside a closed Brixton Tube station today. They say that in 2018 the Tories abolished Transport for London funding. When fare revenue collapsed during the pandemic, short term bailouts from the government came with multiple conditions including job cuts, reviewed working, and attacks on staff pension arrangements.
Des Rice, RMT health and safety rep and vice chair of Finsbury Park branch, said
“We demand proper funding. Not the government blackmailing the management of our company. We want funding like Paris and other large transport networks. We have to have a subsidy. They shouldn’t use the pandemic to hide behind.”
One hundred and fifty-one members of staff withdrew their labour at Brixton today, half of them being Aslef members who respected the picket line.
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