Downing Street has urged employers to permit employees to do business from home throughout subsequent week’s rail strikes.
At the identical time, the transport secretary warned strikers they have been risking their jobs as a result of the railway was competing in opposition to distant working and different types of private and non-private transport.
Half of Britain’s rail strains will likely be closed on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday when members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) and Unite stroll out over pay, jobs and circumstances.
A No 10 spokesman stated it was for people to determine whether or not they might get to their workplaces however there have been some jobs the place house working wouldn’t be appropriate.
“As during the pandemic, it obviously remains sensible for public- and private-sector organisation to offer flexible working arrangements for some jobs,” the spokesman stated.
He insisted the federal government was not “standing by” whereas the strikes loomed.
“I wouldn’t accept that: ministers remain close to the situation and will remain close to the negotiations and discussions,” he stated.
“Industry is offering daily talks with the unions and that’s what we want the unions to engage with and get back round the table.”
He insisted ministers couldn’t intervene within the negotiations, including: “But what you have seen is us consistently call on the unions to call off the strikes, given the impact it’s going to have on people being able to get to work, kids being able to get to school – some of which will be doing exams – and we think that they will be damaging for the railways.”
Transport secretary Grant Shapps issued a plea to these embarking on the three days of walkouts, warning they risked placing themselves out of a job.
He stated the federal government deliberate to introduce laws to allow the usage of company employees throughout industrial motion “if the strike drags on”.
Transport for London (TfL) has strongly inspired folks to not journey on London Underground on Tuesday.
Mr Shapps stated: “These strikes are not only a bid to derail reforms that are critical to the network’s future, and designed to inflict damage at the worst possible time, they are also an incredible act of self-harm by the union leadership.”
“We’re going to endanger the jobs of thousands of rail workers,” he claimed.
“It’s alienating its passengers and the freight customers with long and damaging strikes.”
In response, RMT normal secretary Mick Lynch stated: “Instead of playing to the gallery for his own personal political ambitions, Mr Shapps needs to act like a pragmatic transport secretary who is willing to meet with the union and help us reach a negotiated settlement.”
Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association chief Manuel Cortes stated: “Bully-boy tactics will not wash with our union when the truth is our members are fighting for their jobs, pay and for a safe railway fit for the future.”
Mr Shapps stated season-ticket holders could be paid full compensation on strike days, and he had “moved to help make that an automatic process”.
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