Tube Lines’ staff vote to strike in dispute over pensions and travel perks

Tube Lines staff have voted to strike for 72 hours in a dispute over their pension scheme and travel concessions.

Members of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) will strike from 4pm on Tuesday 24 April and return to work from 4pm on Friday 27 April.

Tube Lines, which is a subsidiary of Transport for London (TFL), provides maintenance services for trains and infrastructure on the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly lines in London.

RMT is demanding that all Tube Lines staff be allowed to join the TFL pension scheme and receive the same travel concessions as employees who work for TFL, which includes free travel within London and 75% off the cost of travel on the mainline railway.

Bob Crow, general secretary at RMT, said: “RMT members have delivered a massive mandate for action following a straightforward demand for parity with other TFL staff.

“This dispute is about justice and about ensuring that all groups of staff under the umbrella of London Underground receive the same rights and benefits, and our members have no choice but to strike to secure those basic rights.

“We have gone through all the negotiating channels, but Tube Lines has refused to budge and have refused to engage in meaningful talks.

“Former Metronet employees have been allowed back into the TFL pension scheme and now also have the same travel facilities as other London Underground employees.

“Tube Lines is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of TFL and there is simply no excuse for refusing to give equal pension and travel rights.”

Lee Jones, operations director at Tube Lines, said: “A strike on this issue is completely unnecessary and will not achieve anything.

“We urge the RMT leadership to end their strike threat and return to talks, as it will only be resolved through constructive discussion.

“The RMT’s ballot showed that less than 44% of its members voted in favour of strike action. Any action would be by maintenance staff, not tube drivers and station staff.

“Should a strike go ahead, we have plans in place which will enable London Underground to operate tube services on all three lines and to minimise any disruption.”

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