Union applauds backing for TPE strike

24 August 2011

Keith Norman, ASLEF’s general secretary, thanked union members in Transpennine Express for the solid support they gave today’s industrial action.

He said he was ‘astonished’ at claims in the media that the company was ready for talks. ‘If they had said this yesterday, there would have been no action today. We offered to suspend the action for talks to continue, either with or without ACAS, and we were shown the door.’

Keith also criticised the fact that managers appeared to have been assigned to watch over each picket line. ‘It would have been much more useful if they had shown the same dedication and enthusiasm in pay talks.’

Keith said that the original vote of over 90% for industrial action, coupled with 100% support for the action by ASLEF members provided ‘the clearest possible evidence that the employer needs to apply itself to serious negotiations rather than mouthing final offers’.

‘TPE’s managers are well paid to sort out problems. They should set about earning their corn,’ he said.

Keith confirmed that the union remained ready and willing to reconvene talks.

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