Labour Research May 2016

Health & Safety Matters

Rail campaign

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn pledged full support for the rail unions’ campaign to defend jobs, services and safety, and for a publicly-owned railway, as German state operator Deutsche Bahn took over the Northern Rail franchise last month. 

The ASLEF, RMT and TSSA unions held a rally on the eve of the takeover in protest at the threat of “Driver-Only Operation” and the sacking of guards, and the threat to rail safety, jobs and passenger services.

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said that according to Rail North’s own estimates, passenger demand for the North’s railway will soar by 50% over the next 15 years “opening the door to even greater profiteering while at the same time threatening to axe safety-critical guards from 50% of the Northern routes”. 

He added: “Something needs to be done — we need a nationalised People’s Railway for the North.”