More Tube strikes likely as talks with Aslef collapse

Another strike is threatening London’s tube network as the Aslef union announced it will ballot more than 2,000 drivers over a “serious breakdown in industrial relations and trust”.

The union accuses the London Underground of ignoring agreements, imposing change without negotiatioan and inflicting excessive and draconian punishments.

The news comes following two strikes in recent weeks due to arguments over a new rota system, which the RMT union claimed had caused safety fears. London Underground has denied there is any risk from the new programme.

Andy Reed, Aslef’s national organiser, said industrial relations varied from hostility to anarchy.

“To operate in a civilised industrial climate we need to respect agreements [that are] in place and, where appropriate, discuss and agree change,” said Reed.

“London Underground does neither – this is why the only alternative is to seek a mandate for industrial action.”

The union will be recommending a series of 24-hour, non-continuous strikes. Ballot papers will be issued next week and the result will be declared on 9 February.

An spokesman for London Underground said: “London Underground is in the process of updating its employment procedures. We have submitted some procedures to our trade unions for consultation and comment. We are committed to working with Aslef and all our trade unions to resolve the kind of issues they are raising through consultation and negotiation.”

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