Tubeworker's blog

John Leach for RMT General Secretary

Workers' Liberty members active in the National Union of Rail, Maritime, and Transport workers (RMT) are supporting John Leach in the election for the union's next General Secretary.

John is a former London Underground station worker, and has served on the RMT National Executive Committee, as...

Keep your badges, we want better conditions and in-house employment!

Risk your life carrying out essential, frontline work during a deadly global pandemic... how does your employer reward you? Well, if you're a cleaner on London Underground... it's with a small badge.

There's widespread anger amongst ABM staff at what's seen as a slap in the face. Rather than...

BLM badge banned?

Staff on Victoria Central stations are appalled at a diktat from local management that they are not to wear RMT Black Lives Matter badges at work. But they are not just appalled, they are not giving in.

While senior management blog about the importance of BLM, and staff across all other locations...

Isolation unpaid?

Tubeworker HQ has received reports of some station staff having Company Sick Pay withdrawn for periods of self-isolation, for extremely spurious reasons.

Although there's only a handful of cases of this type at the moment, they set a dangerous precedent. If workers can't be absolutely confident...

Let's make Mitie feel "welcome"...

Outsourcing firm Mitie has absorbed Interserve, which held the contract for office, depot, and sidings security on LU, meaning Interserve workers are now Mitie workers.

This is a common experience for outsourced staff, being transferred from one employer to another like servants. For example, any...

Full Roster? No Thanks!

There is still a pandemic. There are still far fewer passengers. There is still danger in coming to work.

Sorry for stating the obvious, but it appears that some managers have forgotten.

In order to reduce infection risk, early in the first lockdown, stations adopted 'pandemic rosters', in...

Step forward in Sodexo jobs fight

RMT has reported that Sodexo, the outsourcing giant which runs TfL staff canteens, has backed down from its threat to make workers compulsorily redundant.

As we reported previously, Sodexo was planning to slash 30 jobs on the contract as part of a restructure that will also see canteens move away...

New lockdown: reinforce safety measures!

The new lockdown comes into effect from tomorrow. Our unions must fight for reinforced safety measures.

LU has said workers in the "Clinically Extremely Vulnerable" (CEV) category will not be expected to be in the workplace, and those whose jobs mean they can't work from home are likely to be put...

Close for deep cleans!

Union reps are pushing LU to improve its procedures for when a case of Covid is confirmed in a workplace, after recent incidents at Euston and Victoria. An RMT leaflet says current processes are "not robust or comprehensive enough."

Of particular concern is LU's insistence that they can keep a...

Sadiq Khan's local Labour Party supports Tube cleaners

Tooting Constituency Labour Party in south London has passed a resolution supporting RMT's campaign for full sick pay, staff travel passes, and direct employment for Tube cleaners.

Whilst any wider support throughout the labour movement is welcome and important, this development is especially...

TfL bailout agreed... but £160m "savings" to be found?

The government has agreed a six-month, £1.8 billion funding bailout for TfL, after a period of intense negotiations that saw deadlines extend and talks go down to the wire.

The package is being widely reported as a "win for Sadiq Khan", as the deal does not include many of the concessions the...

Tube cuts: prepare for action

Talks between TfL and the government about a further funding bailout are ongoing, with discussions being extend past the 17 October deadline for the expiry of the previous package.

Tory attack lines blame Labour Mayor Sadiq Khan for "bankrupting" TfL. This is a blatant lie. TfL's funding crisis...

Vulnerable? Come to work!

Senior LU boss Nick Dent wasn't mincing his words in an Employee Bulletin sent out to all staff on 15 October: "All colleagues in our operational teams should continue to come to work as normal, including colleagues who are vulnerable."

Let's remind ourselves of the facts: between 15 and 20,000...

Win on cleaners' sickness and isolation pay

On 30 September, we reported that cleaning contractor ABM had withdrawn an agreement to pay cleaners at their full shift rate for periods of Covid-related sickness and self-isolation. With the agreement withdrawn, cleaners would revert to their normal contractual arrangements, which only entitled...

Protect work/life balance on the SRT

The usual work of the Special Requirements Team (SRT) on stations, covering projects and events, has largely been halted due to the pandemic. To better utilise the SRT, management now want to invoke a clause in their Framework which allows them to be deployed to cover long-term absences, such as...

Resist Sodexo job cuts

Sodexo, the multibillion pound, multinational outsourcing giant, plans to cut 30 jobs on its TfL catering contract.

It has been cooking up the cuts (pun intended) since late last year, when it won an extension to its contract. Sodexo bosses say TfL re-tendered the contract on the explicit basis...

Green Park Jobs to Go?

You would think that staffing levels on stations are as low as they can possibly go, but there are always some managers who seem to think that they can pick one or two more bones off the skeleton.

The local Area Manager wants to replace a full-time CSM post and a part-time CSS post with a single...

Covid Congestion

While Covid cases rise again, the Tube is getting more congested, not less, with many of us faced with overcrowded trains on our journeys to and from work.

The days at the start of lockdown when stations looked like ghost towns are well behind us now.

The 10pm pub and restaurant curfew has...

Training: cutting corners?

Management seem to determine to cut corners with training on stations. Having already chipped away at it over the years, so that it's crammed into two days per year, they've now attacked it further - insisting that CSMs, rather than accredited trainers, deliver it, and they summon people from...

Tube contractor cancels cleaner sick pay

At the beginning of the pandemic, RMT won an agreement from TfL and cleaning contractor ABM that any cleaner who needed to self-isolate, or take time off sick due to Covid, would be paid in full. Normally cleaners only receive Statutory Sick Pay of £95.85 per week, well below their usual weekly rate...

Transport for London audit: Open the books!

The audit and review of TfL's governance and finance, ordered by the Department for Transport (DfT) as part of the funding bailout provided in June, and led by accountancy firm KPMG, was due to make its initial report at the end of August.

As Tubeworker reported, language in the audit's terms of...

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