Britain: Train drivers on strike next month

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s train drivers’ union ASLEF said on Tuesday its members would take further strike action on February 1-3 after rejecting a pay offer.

Earlier this month, rail industry body the Rail Delivery Group said it had offered ASLEF an improved wage offer in return for railway management reforms, in a bid to end a long-standing social conflict.

“The proposal is not and can never be acceptable, but we are ready to engage in further discussions,” Mick Whelan, ASLEF’s general secretary, said in a statement.

“They want to destroy our working conditions in exchange for a drop in wages in real terms”.

The Rail Delivery Group had said the offer included a retroactive pay rise of 4% for 2022, followed by another 4% increase in 2023, and a commitment not to make force majeure redundancies during next year.

However, the offer also included what the entity described as “vital and long-awaited” changes to work organization, including Sunday work and training.

Teachers and 100,000 other public sector workers, including border services staff, are also called to demonstrate their discontent on February 1 over pay disputes.

(Report Kylie MacLellan and Farouq Suleiman; French version Jean Rosset, edited by Kate Entringer)

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