Two weeks after ASLEF declared the result of the strike ballot it appears that management are starting to realise that they can just stick their heads in the sand and hope that everything goes away. On Tuesday at ACAS the unions made it plain that unless the new roster sheets that included Night Tube were withdrawn there could be no negotiation and yesterday management conceded by withdrawing the sheets. We’ll be back at ACAS today but there’s still a long way to go and considering that it has taken five months to get this far I’m not brimming with confidence that things will be resolved before Wednesday night.
To remind everyone what the situation is, LU have offered a pay rise of 0.75% this year after initially offering 0.5% with RPI next year. Our previous deal was RPI+0.5% with 2% minimum, RPI in February was 1.1% so they’re not even offering us inflation. Other train drivers on the privatised TOCs are getting 2% or above and that is the yardstick by which we compare ourselves. For Night Tube they’re offering a £250 one-off bonus for TOps working at affected depots, another £250 if the deal was settled by the end of June which obviously didn’t happen and another £250 after 3 months of Night Tube if there had been no trouble, which seems unlikely.
When our union reps refused this LU threw their toys out of the pram and declared that if we didn’t agree there would be no pay rise at all but when that failed they begged the unions to go to ACAS. At the first meeting management refused to sit in the same room as our reps and at the second they sat there for 20 minutes simply remarking that our position was “noted”.
The next seven days could be very interesting......