Union pulls out of Scots rest day agreement

11 November 2011

ASLEF has announced that it is advising members in Scotland employed by First Scotrail not to work their rest days. The union says the company employs 50 drivers less than it needs and General Secretary Keith Norman insists that to cover this up by institutionalising overtime working is ‘practically and morally wrong at a time of massive unemployment’.

‘Last year Scotrail train drivers worked an additional 10,500 shifts,’ Keith says. ‘This is more than ten extra shifts per driver. So to keep the service working our members are working institutional overtime while unemployment in Scotland increases unabated. This is clearly wrong.’

‘I call on the Scottish government to ensure that Scotrail honours its agreements with its employees and the public by not allowing them to cut any service where the problem has been caused by the clear failure of the company to recruit enough drivers to run that service. ‘Scotrail shareholders are creaming off vast profits from a company whose management is failing to provide enough drivers to maintain the agreed services. This reward for failure has to stop,’ Keith said.

The union also questions why train passengers in Scotland should have to pay above-inflation fare rises while the private rail company skims £16m out of the industry – the amount of profit secured by the franchise.

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