ASLEF and Southern Rail

19 October 2017

ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, and Govia Thameslink Railway, the parent company of Southern Rail, have reached a proposed resolution to their long-running industrial dispute.


The agreement will now be put to ASLEF members at Southern Rail in a referendum, with a recommendation from the union’s executive committee to accept. Subject to the support of ASLEF members, the dispute between the union and Southern, which began in April last year, will be over.


Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, said: ‘ASLEF members now have the opportunity to decide on the new proposed resolution we have negotiated with the company on the three outstanding issues we have with GTR Southern.


‘In separate, but parallel, talks our negotiating team discussed three distinct issues – DOO, terms and conditions, and pay.


‘The proposed agreement on DOO means we will have a second safety-trained person on every train covered by this agreement except in exceptional circumstances. That person will have all the relevant safety competence including the skills to evacuate passengers in an emergency.


‘The proposed agreement confirms and underpins the terms and conditions under which our members at Southern are employed.


‘The proposed agreement will give our drivers a 28.5% increase over the next five years. It covers the October 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020 pay settlements. This deals with the outstanding pay claim that we were previously unable to address and provides a structured deal which will see us through to the end of the franchise.


‘This proposed agreement has the full support of the negotiating team, and ASLEF’s executive committee. This is, we think, a complete resolution of our long-standing issues with Southern but it is, I must stress, company-specific and does not have implications for any other company on the railway network.’


Ballot papers and the associated briefing documents will go to members on Tuesday 24 October and the result of the referendum will be announced on Wednesday 8 November. Until then, when our members will have decided whether to accept the proposed agreement in a democratic ballot, ASLEF will issue no further statements.

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