Scotrail strikes set to go ahead during COP26 summit

Scotrail strikes set to go ahead during COP26 summit

10/22/2021 11:41:00 PM

Scotrail strikes set to go ahead during COP26 summit

The RMT union rejects the latest offer from ScotRail in a dispute over pay and conditions.

Thousands of delegates from across the globe, including world leaders such as US president Joe Biden, will be in Scotland for the summit next month.Mr Lynch said: "There was a golden opportunity for ScotRail to make serious progress in talks today, but instead they offered nothing of any consequence and as a result our action throughout COP26 goes ahead as planned.

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"There is still time to avoid the chaos of a transport shutdown during COP26 if the key players get back with some serious proposals."He said the union remained open to pay rise discussions with ScotRail, but "the ball is firmly in their court".

Earlier, Mr Lynch said he had written to the first minister "calling on her to intervene as a matter of urgency to bring about a fair resolution" to the dispute, and accused rail bosses of having "dragged their heels over further talks" with just weeks until the summit.

Improved pay offerThe TSSA union - which represents managers in the conductor and revenue teams at Scotland's train operator - has already said it would no longer take part in industrial action after accepting an improved pay offer.The union said it had accepted an offer that amounts to a 2.5% pay increase backdated to April 1, 2021, and a 2.2% increase effective from April 1, 2022, with a one-off £300 payment for staff working during COP26.

Aslef has also accepted the pay offer and Unite is balloting members.Image source,Image caption,Transport Scotland had hoped to showcase a "greener, cleaner railway" at COP26A spokeswoman for Transport Scotland, the Scottish government's transport agency, said it was "disappointing" that the RMT had not put the recent pay offer to its members in a ballot.

She said: "We acknowledge that the RMT has at last contacted ScotRail to reject this offer nearly two weeks after it was made."We are keen to see this issue resolved ahead of COP26 so everyone who works in Scotland's railways can play their part in welcoming the world to our country and showcase our efforts towards building a greener, cleaner railway."

A ScotRail spokesman said: "It's extremely disappointing that the RMT have rejected a very good pay offer, negotiated over several weeks, and opted to continue with this highly damaging strike action, particularly when the other three unions have either accepted the offer or have recommended that their members do so.

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