11/09/2009

RMT Calls For Halt To Job Losses At Network Rail

Rail union RMT has called for a halt to job losses at Network Rail after new information supplied by the company revealed that 2549 maintenance jobs are now under threat – a significant increase on the 1800 confirmed by Network Rail two weeks ago.

RMT are warning that the planned jobs cull, which represent nearly 20% of the current workforce, would represent a massive danger to the travelling public and would create the conditions for a repeat of the Potters Bar and Hatfield disasters as essential maintenance work is hacked back.

Figures given to RMT show that Network Rail currently employs 12,995 staff with 1,233 sub-contractors working on maintenance jobs. 1816 direct employees are under threat but, in addition, 733 contractors posts have now been added to the job cuts package.

RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said: "These shocking figures now expose the full extent of the jobs massacre that’s being planned by Network Rail and would leave essential maintenance works cut to ribbons with potentially lethal consequences for the travelling public.

"While we welcome government initiatives on High Speed Rail and electrification those programmes will require more track staff not less and would be compromised by the job cuts that Network Rail are now proposing.

"The combination of maintenance cuts, and the deferral of 28% of the track renewals work which Network Rail has already bundled through, is a dangerous cocktail that creates the conditions for potential disaster on the railways."

(CD/KMcA)

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