End non-essential work on Jubilee Line stations!

Posted in Tubeworker's blog on Sun, 03/05/2020 - 15:48,
Jubilee Line logo

Station areas on the east end of the Jubilee Line, including Waterloo, Canary Wharf, West Ham, and Canning Town, seem to be hot-spots for reckless behaviour by managers, seemingly intent on maintaining non-essential work.

Despite the whole job working to Sunday's minimum staffing numbers, revised Business Needs Schematics having been issued, and a formal agreement in place making clear all areas must implement revised staffing levels, some managers are still refusing to comply. At some of these stations, this has meant up to two times more staff booking on than are actually required.

Some managers seem to think the agreement to reduce the staffing level was about giving staff a nice-to-have perk, by reducing shift times. In fact, it was an urgently required public health measure to eliminate non-essential work and allow as many staff as possible to stay home. So not only is their refusal to implement revised arrangements a direct breach of a negotiated agreement, it's also risking lives.

The RMT branch which organises the area has passed a policy to move to a formal dispute. That's the right stance, but with the official bureaucratic processes necessary to comply with anti-union legislation inevitably slowing things up, workers also need to look at taking direct action immediately. We're all covered by Section 44 of the Employment Rights Act, which gives us a legal right to refuse to work if ourselves or others are being placed in "serious and imminent danger". Tubeworker's view is that managers insisting on continuing with non-essential work does just that, and station staff should exercise their legal rights.

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