Tube and London Overground staff announce fresh strikes on same day | Rail industry
London Underground and Overground staff will go on strike on 19 August, unions have confirmed, piling on transport misery for passengers in the middle of a national rail strike.
About 10,000 members of the RMT union working on the tube, as well as 400 Overground staff working at Arriva Rail London, will strike for 24 hours on the Friday, in two separate disputes over jobs and pay, as a union-imposed deadline passed without the assurances it sought from the employers.
The industrial action falls between two 24-hour walkouts by RMT and TSSA members at Network Rail and 14 train operators on Thursday 18 and Saturday 20 August.
The London Overground staff have rejected what the RMT called a “paltry” 5% pay increase.
Tube workers will be on strike for the fifth time this year in a row over proposed job cuts and changes to pensions, driven by agreements over emergency government funding to Transport for London.
The RMT said TfL had refused to share details of a draft government proposal. Ministers have required TfL to find savings and review pensions as part of earlier bailouts, with billions in fare revenue lost since the start of the pandemic as passengers stayed off the tube.
The union’s general secretary, Mick Lynch, said: “This strike action by our members on LU and the Overground is yet another demonstration of how transport workers refuse to accept a raw deal.
“TfL have had ample opportunity to be transparent about the funding they will receive and to give tube workers the assurances they need. Yet they have totally failed to give those guarantees.
“And Arriva Rail London, a company swimming in money, refuses to give our members a pay rise that will deal with the escalating cost of living crisis.”
Lynch said there would be “significant disruption” due to the strike on 19 August and stressed that TfL and Arriva Rail London bore “responsibility for this breakdown in industrial relations”.
London buses could also be disrupted by strikes at Arriva next month, as drivers prepare to vote on action that would affect services it operates for TfL in the north of the capital. More than 1,400 bus drivers in the Unite union will be balloted from Friday in a dispute over pay.
The Unite general secretary, Sharon Graham, said: “Arriva is a tremendously wealthy company. Instead of siphoning its profits abroad it should be offering Arriva bus workers a fair wage.”
Unite said Arriva, a subsidiary of German transport company Deutsche Bahn, had made profits of £560m from running UK buses in the past decade. Arriva drivers in the north-west are currently on strike and ballots for action are in place in five other English regions.