Rail maintenance workers to strike in pay dispute

Rail maintenance workers are to go on strike in a dispute over pay.

The Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) said its members at Hitachi Rail working as maintenance engineers will walk out for five days from January 27 at sites in Doncaster, Bounds Green in London and Craigentinny in Scotland, in protest at a 6% pay offer.

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “Workers at Hitachi Rail do a range of highly skilled work ensuring that trains and infrastructure are all working properly.

“However, bosses at the multi-million pound company are undervaluing their own staff by being greedy and not offering a decent pay rise.

“This sustained action by Hitachi Rail workers will send a clear message to the company that we will not rest until we get a negotiated settlement on pay, that rewards our members sufficiently.”

Members of Unite at the company will also be on strike on the same days.

Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Hitachi is making enormous profits in the UK and yet it is trying to short-change our members with this real-terms pay cut.

“These workers are highly skilled and perform a safety critical role and yet are being chronically undervalued by their employer.

“Hitachi need to know our members won’t stand for such penny pinching as they head to the picket line.”

Unite regional officer John McGookin added: “Our members haven’t had a decent pay rise in years and yet Hitachi continues to rake in massive profits.

“It’s about time they gave its vital workers a fair share. The anger among Hitachi workers will be on display as they head to the picket line next week.”