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Northern Rail denies union claims over casual staff


North West Evening Mail at http://www.nwemail.co.uk/northern-rail-denies-union-claims-over-casual-staff-1.1053677?referrerPath=1268328
Northern Rail denies union claims over casual staff

By Victoria Brenan

Last updated at 14:07, Thursday, 02 May 2013

Northern Rail has denied union claims it is replacing staff with contract workers and casual staff.

The RMT announced yesterday it was balloting more than 2,000 train drivers, guards and other staff over the use of casual staff.
Members of the union will vote in the next few weeks over whether to launch a campaign of industrial action.
The union claims job security, pay and conditions are being undermined by the use of agency and sub-contracted staff.
General secretary Bob Crow said: “Casualisation and a breach of our agreements are an outright attack on all of us and will not be accepted.”
The ballot will open next week and close on May 20.
Adrian Thompson, HR Director with Northern Rail – which runs the west Cumbria coast line and services from Carlisle to Newcastle – today denied the claims. He said:
“The RMT has demanded that Northern either sacks or employs the 260 people employed on these contracts. The RMT is claiming that Northern is gradually replacing employees with ‘agency staff’ a claim that is completely unfounded and untrue.
“We do not want to put these people out of work. These contracts carry out a vital role, ensuring passengers have valid tickets and those fares are fully captured to reinvest into building a better railway. The changes the RMT is demanding we make would also potentially breach the rules governing the last 12 months of our franchise agreement.”
Northern Rail has 4,900 employees across the north of England.
The ballot opens next Tuesday and closes on Monday, May 20. If workers vote to strike, the earliest it could take place would be May 27. Passengers are advised to check northernrail.org or follow @northernrailorg.

 First published at 14:02, Thursday, 02 May 2013
 Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk

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