24-hour tube strike threatened over harassment claims

Tube train drivers are set to begin strike action tonight over alleged victimisation and bullying at London Underground.

The 180 RMT union members working at the Victoria line underground depot near Seven Sisters are preparing to stage a 24-hour strike starting at 9pm tonight (Wednesday) over a perceived managerial abuse of disciplinary and sickness absence procedures.

Steve Hedley, the London regional organiser for RMT, told Personnel Today that group station managers across the underground network were failing to apply discretion to sickness absence procedures. Staff taking time off to care for sick children and union representatives taking time off to represent other RMT members were being marked down as sick, he claimed.

He said: “This has been happening for a good six months now, it’s just reaching saturation point.”

RMT general secretary Bob Crow added: “There is a culture of bullying and harassment of our members and representatives on the Victoria Line.”

A Transport for London spokeswoman said: “This proposed strike action is completely unnecessary. London Underground believes these issues can be resolved by further discussion. There are procedures in place to deal with these kinds of issues and we ask RMT to return to the negotiating table.”

Elsewhere car logistics company Autologic wrote to all its 280 drivers demanding they give up their union membership, threatening them with redundancy if they refused to do so.

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