ISSUE NUMBER 4, VOLUME 6 MAY 2005
Essential reading for today’s transport worker
INSIDE THIS ISSUE...
TRAIN CREW VOTE TO
‘SAVE OUR RAILWAYS’
WHAT ARE THE RULES?
RMT campaigns for national standards
Rail Against Privatisation
4 page pull-out inside!
TRADE UNION HEROES-
THE TOLPUDDLE MARTYRS
RMTnews :: may 2005
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may 2005 :: RMTnews
LISTEN TO THE
LONDON CALLING FOR VOLUNTEERS
“W hat you people have to
understand is that the future is
about service cuts and fares increases”
to look at fairer electoral systems such
proportional representation to ensure that
peoples opinions are reflected in who
SCOTTISH TUC CONDEMNS FERRY This is how the Department of Transport’s gets elected.
PRIVATISATION director of rail, Mark Lambirth, reportedly The time has also come not just to
Page 8 described the future to senior industry listen to but to act on the concerns of
THE FACTS ABOUT FARE PRICES figures. working people.
At the same time, a “strategic review” That means the only legitimate war is
Page 9 of Northern Rail has been launched a war on poverty.
PARLIAMENTARY COLUMN which threatens to slash essential local It means public services in public
services. hands and no more taxpayers’ money to
These are just some of the reasons subsidise privateers’ profits.
DRUGS AND ALCOHOL - TESTING
why RMT launched the Rail Against It means taking action to reverse the
Privatisation campaign to bring Britain’s dangerous decline in UK shipping jobs
Page 12 railways back into public ownership. that threatens Britain’s status as a
ENGINEERING CONFERENCE - The overwhelming majority of people maritime nation.
TOWARDS NATIONAL BARGAINING want to get back on track to reduce It means ditching for good any plans
pollution by increasing the use of rail, to privatise Scotland’s lifeline Caledonian
Page 14 bus and other environmentally friendly MacBrayne ferry services.
TRAIN CREW - SAVE OUR RAILWAYS transport modes at affordable fares. It means ensuring that working people
Page 16 We have seen the benefits of public get a decent standard of living in
YOUNG MEMBERS MEET ownership since South Eastern Trains was retirement and acting to end attacks on
taken back into public ownership, after pension rights
Page 17 Connex was kicked off the franchise. And it means making real progress on
SAVE THE OLDHAM LOOP Services on SET have improved workers’ rights and bringing Britain’s
steadily, staffing levels and morale are up labour legislation back on the right side
and it’s costing the taxpayer £1 million a of international law.
month less in subsidy. Drug and alcohol testing has been a
Pages 20 Rail privatisation continues to be a controversial issue since its introduction
TOLPUDDLE MARTYRS disaster and is leading to a continuing over ten years ago. This union does not
spiral of lack of investment and service condone the use of drugs and alcohol on
Page 22 cuts. The government’s Railway Act now the job, yet the number of incidents
UNION LEARNING FUND poses a threat to the very existence of involving incapacity due to drugs and
Page 24 rural branch lines with the imposition of alcohol remains very low.
TONY BENN SAYS NO THE EU so-called Community projects. Nevertheless, increased testing is being
CONSTITUTION RAP got the arguments for aggressively pursued by employers
renationalisation into the public arena without consultation with this union, and
Page 25 during the recent general election and there are worrying sign that it is being
PRESIDENT’S COLUMN put candidates on the spot. increasingly used as a stick to beat staff
The results of that election should give and even to target and intimidate union
a sharp warning to the government that reps.
A NHS NIGHTMARE FROM COLIN FOX
it is time to listen to the concerns of The time has come for national
Page 27 working people – the genuine voice of standards which take into account the
WOMEN’S PAGE labour. reality on the ground. Employers need to
Britain has clearly shown that it support staff, not treat them like
Page 28 doesn’t want a Tory government, but the criminals.
BOOK REVIEW huge dent in Labour’s majority and the Fianally, in line with our policy of
Page 29 huge number of voters staying at home continually improving services, I hope
CLASSIFIED/LETTER/PRIZE show that Britain doesn’t want a Labour you enjoy your new-look RMT news.
CROSSWORD government pursuing Tory policies either.
Labour’s vote went down to 36 per Best wishes
Page 30 cent due to the illegal war on Iraq and
HOW TO JOIN THE CREDIT UNION the implementation of Tory policies of
privatisation and cuts. The time has come
RMTnews :: may 2005
Interested in paid SECURITY
telephone work? GUARDS
RMT has just been awarded full union recognition
RMT is looking for people to service will also be used to for 200 security guards working on the Eurostar
undertake paid telephone work contact members on various contract located at Waterloo International, the North
at Unity House to encourage issues including missing Pole depot and Ashford.
people to contact lapsed membership detail etc.
members to encourage them to Anyone applying should They were employed by Securitas until recently
rejoin the union. have a knowledge of RMT and when they were TUPED over to Chubb.
Earlier in the year, the union possess strong telephone
made use of a trade-union communication skills. The work RMT won recognition thanks to a lot of great work
friendly call centre, based in will be on a casual basis for by local rep Billy Kelly and Eurostar Passenger
Edinburgh, to contact lapsed around £10 per hour for a three- Services branch secretary Mick Lynch.
members. This proved to be a hour shift each night, although
“They never gave up during this two-year battle to
great success, with a large this has yet to be finalised.
number of members rejoining The Call Centre will be set up win RMT recognition for guards performing security
the union. with advice from a manager at in the rail industry,” said Alan Pottage of the union’s
As a consequence, RMT the centre in Edinburgh and full organising unit.
wants to carry out a trial in- training will be provided.
house call centre, based at Unity
House, outside of normal If you know of anyone who
working hours, operating a few would be interested, please write
evenings each month. The to either of:
Alan Pottage Peter Waters
RMT National Organising Manager RMT Membership Manager
Maritime House (Side Entrance) Unity House
Clapham Old Town 39 Chalton Street
London SW4 0JW London NW1 1JD
Freephone 0800 376 3706
Open six days a week 8am until 6pm
Legal helpline: 0800 587 7516
Seven days a week
may 2005 :: RMTnews
INITIAL CITY LINK STAFF STRIKE AGAINST LOW PAY
HUNDREDS of RMT members at RMT general secretary Bob that they are no longer prepared round the table with us and
Initial City Link took strike Crow said that the company had to tolerate City Link pay rates thrash out a decent settlement,"
action for 24 hours earlier this rewarded members' contribution that in some cases barely Bob Crow said.
month after the company to the growth of its profits with register above the minimum The dispute involves Initial
compounded low pay in the a “shameful, indecent and wage,” he said. City Link staff at Ashford,
company by imposing a below- frankly unacceptable pay cut". RMT's drive to end low pay Cardiff, Carlisle, Exeter, London
inflation wage increase. "Our members have indicated has struck a chord among Initial Central, London North, London
City Link workers, and South, Heston, Norwich, Park
membership levels have grown Royal, Plymouth, Rochester,
substantially. Swansea, Tonbridge and
The union has made it clear Sunbury.
to the company that it was Current basic pay rates for
happy to talk, but imposing a drivers range from £4.97 an
pay cut would not help. hour – which will be below the
"If Rentokil-Initial really is new national minimum wage of
committed to high standards of £5.05 due in October – for the
behaviour in relation to all its lowest-paid at Swansea to £6.71
employees,' as it claims to be on an hour for the highest paid at
its website, then it will make Ashford, Norwich and
sure that City Link management Tonbridge. In London the rates
accept the need to abolish are between £6.09 and £6.50 an
below-subsistence pay, get hour.
Transport for London staff strike STRIKE AT ‘ONE’
HUNDREDS of RMT members at Transport for London took strike action NEARLY 300 conductors ticket examiners and revenue
earlier this month over the breakdown in industrial relations after voting protection inspectors at train operating company One will
by a margin of six to one for action. strike on Saturday May 21 and Tuesday June 7 over the
Around 230 members working in TfL’s call centre and information centres, company’s failure to offer a new technology payment for
the London Transport Museum, office staff and as revenue control the introduction of new Avantix ticketing machines.
inspectors, bus controllers and staff instructors took action following the The company accepts that the machines will initially
failure to resolve a series of disputes. slow revenue collection, and that will affect staff income.
RMT general secretary Bob Crow said that it was a
These include the introduction of a new
mystery why One was refusing to agree a deal as other
attendance and disciplinary a code
without consultation; failure to consult National Express subsidiaries had already made payments
call-centre staff over a move to a for the introduction of these machines.
temporary new base – which members .“In the long run the company stands to make
believe is the first step to exporting the enormous gains and it is only right that the workforce
call-centre work overseas; redundancy of should share in them.
Transport Museum staff and failure to “The company’s offer of one per cent on commission
resolve outstanding safety issues for 12 weeks is unlikely to cover our members’ lost
concerning revenue control inspectors. income, and means that the workforce is effectively being
asked to subsidise the introduction of new technology,” he
RMT made it clear that it was prepared
to talk to resolve the situation and told PICKET: TfL staff picketed TfL The union has been negotiating since last October, and
TfL that it would would achieve nothing headquarters at Windsor House,
by “burying its head in the sand”.. Victoria Street, and LUL
has already suspended a ballot to allow further talks to
headquarters at 55 The Broadway take place, but One have not budged so far.
RMTnews :: may 2005
TOM DOES A Yvonne’s
MARATHON VETERAN RMT member Tom Angus
ran the London Marathon in five
RMT member Yvonne Scarrott
ran the London marathon for
'Kith and Kids', a London based
charity for disabled children and
hours 45 minutes last month in aid
of the union’s orphan fund. This was her third Marathon
After months of training, Tom and she achieved a personal best
completed the gruelling 25 mile of three hours 18 minutes,
event in order to raise hundreds of beating her previous personal
pounds for the orphaned children of best of three hours 54 minutes.
Tom complained, with a hint of
irony, that it had not been a fair
race as Paula Radcliffe had started
nearly an hour earlier.
“I had no chance of catching her
up after that,” he said.
If you or your branch wants to donate to the
orphan fund make cheques payable to RMT
orphan fund and send to Unity House, 39
Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD
Have you got a
Bridge problem you
M cFarland need legal
S O L I C I T O R S help with?
As well as offering expertise in a wide range of
subjects we have specialists in employment law,
personal injury, accidents at sea, diver’s claims
and clinical negligence claims
Home visits and telephone appointments can be
arranged where appropriate
19 South St. Mary's Tel. 01472 311711
Gate Grimsby, North East www.bridgemcfarland.co.uk
Lincolnshire DN31 1JE e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
may 2005 :: RMTnews
STUC congress condemn Scottish Executive's attempts to privatise the
essential lifeline ferry services operated on the Clyde and to the
Western Isles by Caledonian MacBrayne
RMT SCOTTISH regional organiser Phil RMT general secretary Bob Crow recalled Rail nationalisation was agreed at Labour
McGarry said that maritime unions and the that rail privatisation had been carried out conference last year, Bob pointed out.
STUC are working tirelessly along with the in line with an EU directive on separating "If it's Labour Party policy, how come it
island communities to halt the tendering infrastructure from train operations and doesn't go in the manifesto?" he asked,
process. forcing "competition" on to the railways. stressing that it would help Labour's other
"There are clear alternatives to tendering This approach had also been behind the policies and bring in more money to invest
the services, as shown in the report by demand to privatise the CalMac ferry in health and education.
economist Jeannette Findlay of Glasgow services in Scotland, Mr Crow pointed out.
University," he noted. He told conference that he felt that he
"Let's send a clear message from this had to lie down in a dark room after
congress. CalMac is not for sale - lifeline hearing Transport Secretary Alistair
public services must stay in public hands." Darling's speech.
On the launch of the RAP campaign, "Yesterday, Alistair Darling told you he
congress also unanimously backed calls for wasn't going to renationalise the railways -
renationalisation and for specific powers for and you applauded him at the end of his
the Scottish Executive to take the country's speech," noted Mr Crow.
passenger services back under public "You should have told him to go and get
control. stuffed," he added, to laughter and applause. STUC delegation at Dundee
You have the right
to be accompanied
AN article in a Labour Research
publication recently cast doubt on
whether members could insist on being
accompanied at an investigatory hearing.
However, the right to be accompanied
was established by RMT at an
Employment Appeal Tribunal and as far
as the union is concerned this right still
Some managers may now refuse to
allow members to have a representative
in attendance. Therefore, the
memorandum reproduced here has been
sent to branches so that members can use
it if necessary.
Copies of the letter can also be
obtained by phoning the RMT helpline.
RMTnews :: may 2005
RMT REVEALS ALL COUNTRY ANNUAL SECOND-CLASS FARES
2,026.5 Euros, all zones in the Netherlands
3,000 Euros, unlimited travel throughout Germany
THE FACTS CITY REGIONAL FARES
Paris 'Carte Integrale' £946.49 E1,387.2 zones 1-8 approx 20-mile radius
approx 20 miles radius
Madrid Annual C2 Zones £507.36 E743.6 approx 40-mile radius
Berlin £818.76 cE1,200, approx 40-mile radius
London Zones 1-6 £1,580.00 approx 15-mile radius
PRICES UNDER ANNUAL SEASON TICKETS 2005
STATION MILES COST
Yearly £ per
return miles % Germany % N’lands
Ashwell & Morden
Basildon 24 £1,860.00 £38.8 91% 135%
Fares in London Bayford
Bletchley 46 £2,840.00 £30.9 139% 205%
and South East up Bracknell
Bushey 15 £1,692.00 £56.4 83% 122%
to three times as Cambridge
expensive as other Downham Market
Grays 19 £1,512.00 £39.8 74% 109%
Hertford N 18 £2,024.00 £56.2 99% 146%
SEASON TICKETS and travel cards in other European Hitchin 31 £2,748.00 £44.3 134% 199%
Huntingdon 58 £3,432.00 £29.6 168% 248%
conurbations cost a fraction of those in London Kempston Hardwick 58 £3,264.00 £28.1 159% 236%
and the South East, a new RMT study has Kings Lynn 96 £3,956.00 £20.6 193% 286%
Knebworth 25 £2,340.00 £46.8 114% 169%
revealed. Leigh-on-Sea 32 £2,224.00 £34.8 109% 161%
Released during the RMT Rail Against Leighton B’rd 40 £2,816.00 £35.2 138% 204%
Letchworth 33 £2,924.00 £44.3 143% 211%
Privatisation campaign, the study shows that in Littleport 76 £3,452.00 £22.7 169% 250%
the Netherlands and Germany, commuters can Maidenhead 24 £2,140.00 £44.6 105% 155%
buy an annual go-anywhere ticket for £1,382.68 Maidstone 39 £2,492.00 £31.9 122% 180%
Meldreth 47 £3,136.00 £33.4 153% 227%
and £2,046.90 respectively – compared with cost Milton K’nes 49 £3,284.00 £33.5 160% 238%
of a season into London from Milton Keynes, at Newark 120 £6,068.00 £25.3 296% 439%
Northampton 65 £3,536.00 £27.2 173% 256%
£3,284, Huntingdon at £3,432, or Brighton, at Peterborough 76 £4,988.00 £32.8 244% 361%
£2,952. (incl GNER)
Peterborough 76 £3,740.00 £24.6 183% 270%
London travelcards also compare (WAGN only)
Potters Bar 12 £1,480.00 £61.7 72% 107%
unfavourably with European neighbours, with Purfleet 15 £1,512.00 £50.4 74% 109%
the cost in London, for travel in an approximate Reading (any co) 35 £2,916.00 £41.7 142% 211%
15-mile radius from the centre, at £1,580, Royston 43 £3,136.00 £36.5 153% 227%
Sandy 44 £2,996.00 £34.0 146% 217%
compared to Madrid (40-mile radius) at £510, Shepreth 48 £3,136.00 £32.7 153% 227%
Berlin (40-mile radius) at £829 and Paris (20- Shoeburyness 39 £2,392.00 £30.7 117% 173%
Southend 35 £2,300.00 £32.9 112% 166%
mile radius) at £950. St Albans Aby 23 £2,224.00 £48.3 109% 161%
In the report, widely covered by the media, St Neots 51 £3,220.00 £31.6 157% 233%
Stevenage 27 £2,560.00 £47.4 125% 185%
the union pointed out that the private sector was Thorpe Bay 37 £2,392.00 £32.3 117% 173%
taking out a billion pounds a year from the Tilbury Town 21 £1,512.00 £36.0 74% 109%
railways and £2 million a week from the Tube. Tring 31 £2,816.00 £45.4 138% 204%
Waterbeach 61 £3,264.00 £26.8 159% 236%
“Is it any wonder that commuters are paying Watford Jctn 17 £2,064.00 £60.7 101% 149%
through the nose for their season tickets?” RMT Watlington 90 £3,788.00 £21.0 185% 274%
Watton-at-Stone 22 £2,208.00 £50.2 108% 160%
general secretary Bob Crow said. Welham Grn 15 £1,728.00 £57.6 84% 125%
“Commuters in European countries where the Welwyn Garden City 20 £2,060.00 £51.5 101% 149%
Welwyn N 22 £2,172.00 £49.4 106% 157%
railways remain in public hands pay a fraction Westcliff 34 £2,300.00 £33.8 112% 166%
of season ticket costs here. Woburn Sands 50 £3,264.00 £32.6 159% 236%
Wokingham 36 £2,932.00 £40.7 143% 212%
“The time has come to draw the line under Wolverton 52 £3,284.00 £31.6 160% 238%
privatisation and bring our rail and Tube back
Prices converted at Euro = £0.6823
into the public sector where they belong,” Bob
may 2005 :: RMTnews
MERSEYRAIL GUARDS SET FOUR Parliamentary column
STRIKE DATES IN 35-HOUR
WEEK DISPUTE Back to
RMT GUARDS at Merseyrail are
to strike on Saturday May 21,
“The offer that emerged from
the mediation process was
Saturday May 28, Friday June
10 and Saturday July 9 after
essentially no different from the
one they have already taken
decisively rejecting unacceptable
strings attached to the
strike action over.
“Merseyrail still want our W hen you examine the details of the election results
constituency by constituency you will find that on average
members of the RMT Parliamentary group gained better results at
company’s 35-hour week members to pay for their 35-
proposals. hour week by losing rest days the polls than most other Labour MPs.
In a ballot of the 170 and they have found that just as The reasons are obvious. In addition to the fantastic campaigning
members, the company’s offer unacceptable now as it was in support from the union and its membership, RMT parliamentary
was rejected by 104 votes to 13 March. candidates were campaigning on a clear programme of the
– a margin of eight to one. “We have been waiting for union’s policies which included public ownership of the rail
“Our members have once four years for this issue to be industry, an end to privatisation, and decent pay, conditions and
more voted decisively to reject resolved, and the company has pensions.
an offer from Merseyrail that no-one to blame but itself for As the union’s national march proved, the demand for bringing rail
gives with one hand and takes the disruption its intransigence back into public ownership and control proved to be a popular
away with the other,” RMT is causing,” he said. issue on the doorstep. Opinion poll after opinion poll have
general secretary Bob Crow said. demonstrated not only widespread support for this policy but also
large scale opposition to privatisation not just in the rail industry
but public services overall.
Centra Buses breach health The question in this new Parliament is whether the government is
and safety rules to break strike listening. In his first speech after the election result, the Prime
Minister said that he would listen and learn from what was being
RMT reported ‘serious breaches’ for up to 24 hours, in clear said on the doorsteps in the campaign. However, within days he
announced that his third term in office would be “unremittingly
of safety rules by Centra Buses contravention of driving hours
New Labour” and he went on to appoint a series of ministers who
in the company’s attempt to regulations. are drawn from a narrow circle of what can only be described as
break strike action in south The union fears that Centra is New Labour zealots, transferred in from the SDP or the Tory party.
London earlier this month by placing the public in serious
employing unqualified agency danger by flouting safety rules The Prime Minister’s programme for the new session of
Parliament set out in the Queen’s speech does not provide much
staff. rather than negotiate a
evidence of a government listening or learning.
The union asked the health and settlement to the dispute behind
safety inspectorate to pay an the stoppage. Not only does it fail to address the question of public ownership
emergency visit to the Croydon The RMT claim is for a basic of the rail industry but it has a continuing and underlying theme of
depot over fears that agency £500 weekly wage, equal privatisation of public services. Even the justice system is now not
drivers without appropriate contracts and pay for all immune from the privatisation threat as the government has
committed itself to further privatisation of the prisons and
passenger carrying vehicle employees, no zero-hours
probation service. In health and education services the use of the
licenses (PCVs) are being used contracts, adequate annual
private sector and the promotion of private control of services
by Centra. leave, sick-pay from day one of threatening to gather momentum in the coming period.
There were also reports that employment, full rostered
agency drivers have been earnings for victims of assaults, Within the long list of legislation proposed in this session of
instructed to remain with fair allocation of overtime and Parliament which is to last 18 months there is little sign of the
Warwick agreement reforms promised to the trade unions before
vehicles and available to drive an end to victimisation.
the election. Lurking behind the legislative programme is the
continuing fear that the Government is to press ahead with the
mass job cuts in the civil service and the planned reduction in
SUNDERLAND RAIL SERVICES UNDER THREAT public sector pension benefits. In addition, the government is
RMT reacted angrily to the happen exactly a year after the proposing changes to incapacity benefits which will require close
scrutiny if we are to head off cuts in benefits and the introduction
Strategic Rail Authority’s Trans-Pennine Express services
of a regime which will penalise the sick and disabled.
insistence that halving rail from Sunderland to Manchester
services linking Sunderland and York, Leeds and Liverpool were Throughout this new session, the RMT Parliamentary group will
the Metro shopping Centre at axed. continue to work with the union to monitor legislation and issues
Gateshead are ‘a good idea’. “I am not sure what the city as they progresses through Parliament and will be speaking up to
RMT general secretary Bob has done wrong, but it appears represent the interests of RMT members, seeking to amend the
legislation wherever possible and if necessary oppose anything
Crow slammed the drastic cut to that the SRA is determined to
which in our judgement and the judgement of the union
an important rail link, and send Sunderland to Coventry,
undermines the rights and quality of life of RMT members and
questioned how the SRA could because year on year it is being their families. RMT members can rest assured that our union will
describe it as a ‘good idea’. isolated from the rest of the have once again a strong and powerful voice in this Parliament.
“It is even more astonishing national rail network,” Bob said.
because the latest cut is due to John McDonnell MP
For Hayes and Harlington
RMT Parliamentary group convenor
Time for national
standards for drug
and alcohol testing
may 2005 :: RMTnews
was used, it must provide an
accurate result so as to avoid
any member being falsely
accused and possibly losing
their jobs. This was eventually
agreed and a contract awarded
to the Health & Safety
Laboratory to carry out a study
of the various methods of drug
testing, and in particular the
efficacy of oral fluid/saliva
T he application of drugs and
alcohol testing has been seen
as a controversial issue since its
Network Rail as a positive result
invariably results in instant
dismissal. Moreover, six Tube
appropriate guidelines, leaving
staff ignorant of procedures and
The outcome of that study
was recently considered by the
introduction on the railways maintenance workers that tested The selection process for
General Grades Committee. They
back in 1992. negative were still sacked by random testing is also open to
noted that the accuracy of oral
It is an offence under Metronet last year after empty question as private healthcare
fluid testing was largely
sections 27 and 28 of the beer cans were found in a providers often attend the
equivalent to that achieved
Transport and Works Act 1992 widely-used mess room. nearest depot and test all the
through urine testing, but as the
for employees to carry out, and Excessive waiting time for staff that happen to be around
introduction of oral fluid testing
for employers to allow screening has also led to staff rather than employing a more
could raise other concerns, it
employees to carry out safety being held against their will systematic method which would
was felt that Branches should be
critical tasks while under the after the end of their shift and be less open to abuse. This lack
sent a summary of the study
influence of drugs or alcohol. the withholding of food and of an objective process has also
findings and their views sought
The union endorses the view drink. led to allegations that trade
on the matter.
that coming to work under the Other issues include a routine union activists are being
In particular, the study
influence of drugs or alcohol is lack of facilities for urine disproportionately targeted for
highlighted the fact that the
unacceptable. However, it should samples to be taken with dignity drug and alcohol testing.
adoption of oral fluid testing
also be recognised that the in private, leading to unhygienic
FAIR TREATMENT could also affect the time
number of incidents involving practices.
normally needed to obtain
drugs and alcohol at work are Assistant general secretary The union has requested
samples which may be far
very low. Mick Cash said that transport meetings with Network Rail to
quicker and, therefore, may not
Moreover, it has been widely workers face some of the most discuss all these concerns. RMT
need staff rosters to be altered.
reported that testing has been stringent testing around, general secretary Bob Crow has
Also, the time window for the
used as a stick to beat and including unannounced testing made clear that the manner in
detection of most drugs in oral
intimidate staff. Drug and which was imposed by Network which drug and alcohol policies
fluid is shorter than in urine,
alcohol policies are also reported Rail 18 months ago without were being carried out created a
and so may indicate a closer
to be applied in a draconian consultation with the union. lot of anger and undermined
relationship with actual
manner with little attention He said that the problem was confidence in the system.
impairment at the time of
being given to education and not testing as such but the “The present situation is
treatment. arbitrary and uneven way the leading to a breakdown of
The different time windows
Positive drug tests resulting company had imposed the consensus on this issue.
could also have implications
from over the counter policy. “What is required are
where staff from different
medications that create little or “The puritanical and heavy- national standards underpinned
companies may work alongside
no relation to work performance handed zeal with which these by fair treatment of staff,” he
each other, but each of those
have also led to knee-jerk tests are carried out are causing said.
companies have different
dismissals. problems for staff,” he said. Bob said that if there is no
methods of testing. In such a
Last year’s report of the Mick said that it appeared the satisfactory outcome to the talks
situation, it is possible that
Independent Inquiry into Drug principle driving Network Rail then members will be consulted
workers having ingested the
Testing at Work concluded, D&A policy, including the and industrial action would not
same amount of
following an 18-month imposition of unannounced be ruled out.
drug/medication at the same
investigation, that some drug testing was the need to save
ALTERNATIVE DRUG TESTING time, could obtain different
testing methods were a "costly money.
and divisive" way of managing “Previously, staff were
Branches are advised that
employees, and was an booked off in order to have In response to proposals a few
their views in this matter should
"inappropriate use of managerial testing carried out but now years ago for the use of mouth
be submitted before the end of
power". testing is carried out on the job. swabs to collect oral fluid for
July and in the meantime local
The TUC reported to the “This can clearly affect staff drug screening purposes, the
or company level representatives
inquiry that while appropriate performance as they may be RMT called upon the rail
should not engage in any
for staff in safety critical posts it distracted by such a trauma and industry to commission
discussions with management
“should be part of a their mind might not be on the independent research to evaluate
on the possible introduction of
comprehensive safety strategy job,” he said. the various drug testing
oral fluid testing. Any such
that includes support for staff There have also been methods.
proposal by an individual
who test positive”. widespread complaints that Our aim was to ensure that
company should be reported to
This is clearly not the case at some employers have not issued whatever method of screening
head office immediately.
RMTnews :: may 2005
Engineering grades meeting in Sheffield Network Rail’s own code stated
what drugs rendered workers
agreed to convene a special two-day unfit for work under rule 3.2
and this imformation should be
conference to discuss the need for national more widely distributed.
IMPLEMENT WELFARE RULES
collective bargaining Conference agreed that it was
time that Health and Safety
DELEGATES agreed that the conditions and the health and Electrical and Track London Executive (HSE)
union should campaign for a safety of all our infrastructure Underground said that the recommendations for provision
“comprehensive and members,” he said. computers being used to pick of welfare facilities at
meaningful” collective Bill Rawcliffe, York and out staff for testing were very infrastructure maintenance and
bargaining machinery for grades District reminded conference impressive as very often they renewal sites.
covered by conference, that being brought back in- chose RMT reps. Brendan Kelly, Bristol Rail
including those still outside house was not a cure-all. Dave Hobbs, Newport said said that some contractors
Network Rail. “Network Rail is not British that testing was being carried ignore health and safety
Steve Smart, March and Rail, it is driven by cost and out by “shoddy” contract firms recommendations for welfare
District said that harmonising profit,” he said. and that there was clearly a facilities for transient workers.
the myriad of different pay rates Danny McNicol, East need to inform members what These facilities include
and conditions would be a long Midlands warned that the sort their rights are. adequate washing, toilet, rest
and difficult task, but it had to of harmonisation required would Assistant general secretary and changing facilities and
be done. “come to nothing” if PT&R Mick Cash said that increasingly somewhere clean to eat and
“In Network Rail we are arrangements were not protected Network Rail was bringing in drink during breaks.
looking at a clean sheet of paper and abuses investigated random screening. “Now many people have been
on which to create a system for thoroughly by the union. “This is being done without transferred over to Network Rail
the betterment of all,” he said. Conference resolved to consultation with the union and it is time for a new start and
Mark Farrington, convene a special two-day the consensus on the issue is start spending some profits on
Warrington District warned that conference at the earliest breaking down,” he said. decent facilities for the
the use of ‘role clarity’ could be opportunity. Greg Hewitt, Brighton workforce.
used to “blur grades” and reported that staff were being “If we are still discussing
undermine conditions. DRUG AND ALCOHOL TESTING forced to give urine samples on this issue next year with no
“We need to protect grade Drug and alcohol testing the track without “dignity of improvements we will have
structures in this process and methods should be reviewed and privacy”. failed as a union,” he warned.
stop management abandoning those tested should not be kept Willie Devlin, SET London Gerry McCann, Ayr added
competency levels,” he said. beyond their normal hours of Underground said it was that many female workers were
John Boyle, Wishaw and work, conference agreed. necessary to find out what was coming into the industry,
Motherwell said that those Steve Wallace, Fort William going on in each area in order making it even more important
private companies not brought said he had been held for hours to establish national standards. “to get this sorted out once and
back in-house under Network after work for a drug and “In LUL we had the case of for all”.
Rail were ignoring procedures alcohol test. the Farringdon Five where staff Peter Trend, reporting for
and making people redundant. “This is false imprisonment were found to be negative and the Council of Executives, said
“We need one standard and constituents a breach of were still sacked” he said. that the union had made
across the industry ensure the human rights,” he said. Barry West, Cornwall Mid representations to Network Rail
protection of jobs, pay, Doug Hammersley, Signal, West reminded conference that over the issue and the union’s
may 2005 :: RMTnews
position was being moved provision rules should be sector. importance of a strong and
forward. published in the union journal Doug Hammersley said that united membership in securing
Barry West said that under to ensure the widest possible Tube privatisation had resulted the protection of jobs and
health and safety rules there was distribution of information. in engineering workers going improvements in pay, conditions
a clear duty of the employers to over to the profit-driven private and health and safety.
provide welfare. END PPP contractors Tubelines and He said after a local audit he
“There is a need to educate Conference called on the union Metronet. was shocked to find the how
members on the dangers of to continue to campaign for “What has happened to many people were not members
unhygienic practices and inform London Underground Limited mainline staff following of the union.
them of their rights,” he said. engineering infrastructure to be privatisation is happening to us Peter Skelly, Bridgend
He suggested that welfare brought back into the public now. Llantrisant and District said the
“Now whenever there is a union had agreement from
problem they do not talk about Network Rail for the union to
safety, they ask if it a case of attend induction courses to
‘variance of contract’, in other explain the benefits of RMT
words are they liable,” he said. membership.
Willie Devlin said that these “We have a right to attend all
infracos were lining their induction courses and where
pockets at the expense of the this isn’t happening the union
workforce and the taxpayer. should be informed,” he said.
“They are disbanding gangs Gerry McCann said that one
and handing the work over to key area was the need to recruit
sub-contractors. health and safety reps which
“This union should not rest represent a very important of
until Tube infrastructure is back the union’s work.
in-house where it belongs,” he Gerry Hitchins of the RMT
said. organising unit highlighted the
problems at Grant Rail, where
RECRUITMENT AND the company will presently only
ORGANISATION recognise the union for those
Conference agreed that it was staff recently transferred from
necessary to encourage members Jarvis.
Martin Valente and local reps to pro-actively “We should have recognition
recruit members and build the rights for all infrastructure
union at the workplace. members,” he said.
John Boyle outlined the
GRANT RAIL RMT MEMBER MARTIN VALENTE
GIVES HIS THOUGHTS ON HIS FIRST GRADES
This gives me the opportunity to to Grant Rail RMT members and his
thank everyone at the conference for determination to achieve our goal of
their support for every RMT member at recognition.
Grant Rail. I will be informing them How every delegate showed, by the
that Grant Rail workers have the way they spoke to me, that they are all
support of so many in our fight for behind us.
recognition. I’ll try and make them feel as I do
I will be telling them about the that we are now part of a strong
hard work being done by Gerry transport union, a union that will
Hitchin and the organising team on always be there for us.
our behalf. So going to the conference has
I will be telling them about the made me stronger as a union rep. As I
speech made by our secretary Bob left I felt that I could take on Grant
Crow and how he referred many times Rail any day, but don’t tell them that.
RMTnews :: may 2005
A packed RMT train crew conference
in Edinburgh called for the defence
represented a serious threat to
the very existence of many rural
lines Ed Fontaine, Plymouth
“Handing these lines over to
of national rail services and the role rail enthusiasts would be a
prelude to closure or the
of the guard creation of small private rail
“This means fare increases,
CONFERENCE agreed that the the role of the guard. passenger groups. replacing services with buses
Railways Act, Community Rail Greg Tucker, Waterloo said Craig Johnston, Carlisle City and job losses and this union
partnerships, the re-privatisation it was necessary to develop an said that if the government should not stand back and allow
of South Eastern Trains, industry-wide strategy that really wanted to reduce branch lines to close without an
contingency plans and the clearly defines the role of the subsidies and save money it almighty fight,” he said.
Northern Rail review all guard and restricts companies should bring the railways back Pat Sikorski said that the
represented threats to jobs, from diluting safety into public ownership and “kick current crisis was due to
services and the role of the responsibilities in the pursuit of the profiteers off the network”. government policies that
guard. profit. Growing uncertainty over allowed the drive for profit to
Craig Johnston, Carlisle City Assistant general secretary Northern Rail has been be put in front of the interests
said it was appaling that train Pat Sikorski said that the new heightened by comments made of the industry.
operating companies were revamped guard’s charter by Director of Rail Strategy and “Community Rail represents
undermining the rulebook by outlined the role of the guard, Resources Mark Lambirth who Beech-style cuts that leaves
imposing secretive so-called including in the event of the warned senior industry figures rural and regional lines to be
“contingency plans”. failure of on-train safety that: “What you people have to run by enthusiasts as long as it
“On Northern Rail this has devices. understand is that the future is lasts, bearing in mind that there
meant that trains can remain in “We cannot allow the about service cuts and fares will only be short-term
service with no emergency imposition of rule changes and increases.” subsidies.
brake systems or TIS, contingency plans without These comments were even “All these issues are
undermining safety on the rail consultation,” he said. more alarming given the powers encapsulated under the Rail
network and representing a in the new Railways Act making Against Privatisation campaign
threat to passengers and staff,” DEFEND NORTHERN RAIL it far easier for the government which points to the need of an
he said. Conference agreed that the to cut rail services. integrated public transport
Conference demanded the ongoing review of Northern Rail Conference called on the network,” he said.
withdrawal of such contingency services taking place just union to fight any closures or
plans and for action to be taken months after the creation of the bustitution plans that may come NATIONAL PAY BARGAINING
if companies refused to do so. new franchise threatens cuts, out of the review of Northern The time has come to put into
the replacement of services with Rail services. practice union policy of one
ROLE OF THE GUARD buses and line closures. national pay system for all train
Conference agreed that rule Alex Holden, Manchester DEFEND RURAL LINES
crew grades, conference agreed.
book changes, the introduction Victoria said that a massive Plans to introduce nearly 60 Greg Tucker, Waterloo said
of new stock, refranchising and campaign was required to Community Rail Partnerships the union should work towards
timetabling were undermining defend these services involving (CRPs) by the government common pay claims, based on
common terms and conditions
in all companies as part of a
campaign for national collective
“Before World War Two this
union achieved one national set
of job descriptions, pay and
conditions for all train crew
when the network was in
“It has been done before and
we can do it again,” he said.
may 2005 :: RMTnews
Steve West, Manchester
South said that ending the
current fragmentation of terms
and conditions was part of the
wider campaign to ending the
chaos caused by rail
FOR A FAIR DRUGS AND ALCOHOL
Conference called for a fair,
welfare-based drug and alcohol
policy to replace the arbitrary
policies presently in place which
was based on pre-judgement
Craig Johnston, Carlisle City
said that conference supported
RMT policy in not condoning
being under the influence of
alcohol or drugs while at work.
“However, the policies have
only one consistency, “if
positive, you are guilty”, which
always results in dismissal, and structures were looking for a RECOGNISE RMT DRIVERS Susan Marshall, Shrewsbury
that mitigating circumstances unified policy and standard Conference agreed that RMT said that the same situation
are never taken into account,” procedures. drivers working for C2C existed at Central Trains and she
he said. He said that testing was not deserved representation rights. was “sick and tired” of being
He described cases where “random” on London Danny Owen, North Thames dictated to by another union.
staff have had their drinks Underground as claimed. said that the company was Greg Tucker, Waterloo
spiked then tested and sacked. “In order to make up the refusing to negotiate with the pointed out that under British
“Such policies have resulted numbers they test the spares in union and had entered a single Rail the union had negotiating
in staff being branded as drug the depot. union deal with ASLEF. rights for drivers. “All we are
takers or alcoholics, degraded, “But it is clear they won’t “This is an infringement of asking is to have them returned
humiliated and stripped of their employ more spares to allow a basic human rights to join a to us,” he said.
dignity,” he said. proper random procedure due to union and these single union
Pat Sikorski said that the cost,” he said. ID CARDS
deals should be scrapped,” he
new union health and safety said. Conference agreed that should
ID cards be introduced by the
SSP leader addresses conference government, the union must
resist any attempts by train
operating companies to use staff
Scottish Socialist Party inequality,” he said.
as part of police, immigration or
leader Colin Fox reminded He outlined plans for a
delegates why the RMT in demonstration in Edinburgh on
Brendan Glenn, Manchester
Scotland opted to affiliate to the July 2 to ‘Make Poverty History’.
South said that identity checks
SSP. “As the local Scottish
were not the job of train crew
“We share the same Parliament member, I invite you
and never should be.
principles, policies and all to come along and campaign
Bob Law, East London Line
aspirations,” he said in a well- for democracy against
said that staff could be exposing
received speech. undemocratic organisations like
themselves to violent attacks if
“These principles are more the G8, the World Trade
they were coerced into carrying
relevant than they have ever Organisation, the IMF, the World
out such duties.
been, including the need to Bank and EU commissioners,”
combat poverty, low pay and he said.
RMTnews :: may 2005
YOUNG MEMBERS MEET
The second young member’s conference, held RMT to introduce a pension
Young members need to gain
in Nottingham, proved to be another the knowledge required to
successful step towards firmly establishing this understand pension issues and
how the government is dealing
new RMT group, writes Nick Quirk with the question.
Jubilee South & East London
line branch requested that
ALTHOUGH THE conference not just within the union but in supported by all RMT members. young members should be
attendance was small, it still social society as well, Tony Gerry Hitchen of the RMT targeted for education so that
proved that the young members Donaghey stated. organising unit agreed and said they can learn about the union
in this union are passionate “The need to attract young that “its disappointing to be due to the negative image that
about improving their pay and activists is vital for the future of here in South Yorkshire, an area the media have inflicted on
conditions as well as their voice this union. full of trade union history and trade unionism.
in the union. “There is still a lot of work to achievements only to discover Plymouth No.1 branch
The predominant theme be done in shaping this young that many young people don’t introduced a motion calling on
among the motions this year members conference, but this is even know what a trade union the union to investigate ways of
was the need for serious a great attempt to involve is,” he said. giving financial assistance to
recognition and rights for the young members within the It seems clear that the young members to ensure a
young members section. union,” he said. motions from the conference better attendance at conference.
Dave Giles, Jubilee South & Tony wanted to find out why need to be taken very seriously Without this support, it
East London Line said: ‘I hate young members are not as for the future of the union. would make the continual
being referred to as ‘the kids’, active as in the past, he claimed Education for the young growth of this section
it’s about time the RMT treated that Thatcherism and now members was another big issue increasingly difficult and put off
the young members respectfully.’ Blairism within the New labour at the conference. The media potential activists from
In order to advertise the party had set back introducing has been dominated by pension attending future conferences.
young member’s movement, young activists into politics and problems within the public Delegates agreed to finish
many motions called upon the indeed trade unionism. sector which has led to all conference early to support the
RMT news and recruitment The words socialism is members, particularly the recent Central Trains dispute We
departments to produce deemed to be “bad” with the younger members, confused and achieved a lot at this conference
propaganda aimed specifically current trend being not to be worried about the future of their and hopefully it can develop to
at young members. politically motivated which is pension. attract more activists to have an
There is a need to increase of why the young member’s A motion submitted by even better conference next
activists amongst young people movement needs to be Plymouth No.1 branch urged year.
may 2005 :: RMTnews
Train crew conference delegate Alex Holden figures, the money needed to
outlines the case against handing the Oldham loop build the extensions has not
been forthcoming and there is a
line over to tram privateers local campaign called ‘Get our
Metrolink back on track’.
FOR MANY years railways and Now, no RMT member is the system is showing signs of The company even re-liveried
tramways operated happily side going to argue against more age. It is estimated that it will one of the trams with a huge
by side. However, in the middle public transport. However, cost around £100 million to logo carrying this message.
of the last century, tramways in converting the Oldham loop to bring the infrastructure back to Ironically, that tram derailed in
our towns and cities were light rail would not provide 1990 standards. This is money the city centre on old and
dismantled, with only the additional public transport. It they have not got, yet they want shoddy ‘phase one’ track.
Blackpool tramway remaining. would simply replace one mode to take more railway. With a closure order granted
That was until a new of transport with another. The powers that be are on the Oldham Loop, the route
generation of tramways came Furthermore, an objective look desperate for the expanded is living on borrowed time.
along with names like at the options available reveals route. In 2002, when the closure A pre-Metrolink timetable of
Supertram, Tramlink and that there are few benefits for of the Oldham Loop was only two trains an hour from
Metrolink. In greater conversion. granted, a document supporting Victoria to Rochdale, stopping at
Manchester, Metrolink won In fact, less money would be conversion claimed that journey all stations, has led to passenger
widespread support and a better spent on improving times on trams would be far numbers dropping like stone.
campaign was launched for the existing rail infrastructure, quicker than trains and there The service is due to revert to
system to be expanded. rather than wasting millions on was far more capacity. the faster four trains per hour in
Part of this ‘phase three’ chucking trains off the loop and However, these figures were each direction when the summer
expansion takes in the heavy replacing them with trams. somewhat distorted. timetable comes into force, with
rail route known as the Oldham Metrolink is essentially two The rail capacity comparison through trains to Wigan and
loop, running from Manchester very good former rail routes was only for a single 142 set Merseyside also returning.
to Rochdale. This route forms with a bit of on-street running and did not consider the 130 per Hopefully, passengers will
the bulk of work at Manchester linking the two. The Bury and cent figure of seating capacity, a return as well but how long will
Victoria depot as well as Wigan Altrincham lines were regarded figure that is routinely broken. the service remain?
Wallgate. as good paying routes, with The tram capacity figure was What is clearly required is an
It is true that the route is in trains regularly full of for a seating and standing end to the uncertainty once and
need of investment. But that can passengers. Both were snatched capacity of four persons per for all and for the closure order
be said for whole swathes of the from British Rail in 1989 and square metre of floor space. This to be repealed. The Oldham Loop
rail network. Moreover, a lot of turned into the separate translates to 25 square could become part of an
the problems on the Oldham privatised edifice called centimetres per passenger, integrated transport network
loop come about as a direct Metrolink. probably less as the seats are which utilises the present
result of the uncertainty Since then, very little has larger. infrastructure and provides a
surrounding the route. been spent on infrastructure and Despite these distorted decent rail service.
RMTnews :: may 2005
The RMT campaign to end the continued have to reside and be recruited
abroad in order for the
exemption to apply,
discrimination against seafarers under the discrimination on other grounds
is not allowed.
above Act is gathering pace RMT has continued to raise
this discriminatory legislation
DISCRIMINATION against Free Movement of labour up to modern day standards, it when campaigning for UK
seafarers is permitted through provisions. This confirms a still permits shipowners to seafarers employment. The issue
an exemption in the 1976 Race recent statement made by the utilise foreign national seafarers was recently highlighted by the
Relations Act. The government EU Transport Commissioner. on UK ships on exploitative TUC Deputy General Secretary
have now been forced to rates of pay and long tours of Frances O’ Grady at the RMT
concede a further review of AMMENDMENTS duty. Parliamentary Biennial General
sections eight and nine of the In 2003 the government The amended Race Relations Meeting.
Act and a consultation amended the 1976 Race Act made clear that the
document is expected very soon. Relations Act and the exemption exemption is based on domicile NEW DEVELOPMENTS
However, RMT has sought allowed for seafarers who are as opposed to race, colour or Arising from a statement by
legal advice and the union have recruited abroad to work on UK ethnic origin which was the European Commission
been advised that the ships. Despite attempts by the previously permitted. In practice transport spokesperson,
discrimination on pay rates is government to pretend that the the discrimination is still based government lawyers have been
not permissible under the EU legislation was being brought on nationality but the seafarers forced to examine whether UK
may 2005 :: RMTnews
legislation complies with EC this year issue a consultation The RMT case is based on the following key points:
law. exercise and the crucial question
• Seafarers are in practice being discriminated against on the basis of
European Commission will be how the link referred to their nationality even if they are domiciled abroad.
officials stated that any EU above will be defined. If as a
seafarer should be paid result of the consultation • The discrimination is being applied in British workplaces. Other
industries employing workers from abroad would quite rightly be
according to the home rate of exercise the law is changed to
expected to pay UK rates of pay when in UK workplaces.
the flag of the ship they serve outlaw discrimination against
on, regardless of residence. In EU seafarers on EU ships this • Despite all the arguments about being competitive in a global industry
the UK shipping industry should not be able to escape these
effect, this would mean that could significantly reduce the
Spanish, Polish or any other EU ability of shipowners to utilise
nationals could not be low cost seafarers at the • The arguments of residence are not valid, and for seafarers
discriminated against on pay expense of UK seafaring permanently engaged they are actually living abroad the UK vessels
for approximately 10 out of 12 months in any one-year. This is
when compared with resident nationals.
because of the more intensive work patterns on which foreign
UK seafarers employed on board RMT shipping secretary Steve nationals are engaged.
UK flagged ships. Todd said that the union is
Following questions from determined to ensure that the • The Race Relations Act and other equality legislation should in
principal be universally applicable.
unions in the Shipping Task reforms to the legislation are
Force Working Group the carried out effectively. • The arguments used by the shipowners are of course very similar to
Department of Transport have “We have sought senior legal the arguments that have been used by employers when seeking to
now stated that, after receipt of opinion and I am pleased to avoid other legislation on minimum standards and equal rights.
legal advice, they have report that we have been • It is not acceptable for the government to be blackmailed from
concluded that sections eight advised that the discrimination implementing equality legislation on the basis of threats to flag out
and nine of the 1976 Race under the 1976 Race Relations vessels.
Relations Act will have to be Act falls foul of the EU Freedom • Employment for UK seafaring ratings continues to decline. The
reviewed. of Movement provisions,” he Chamber state that ships will desert the UK Flag but the simple reality
The advice from government said. is that currently ships are joining the UK register without any UK
lawyers apparently states that if The union will be guarding seafarers employed.
a close enough link (to be against the possibility that the • Because of the cloak of respectability of the UK Flag, shipping
defined) existed between an EEA discrimination is allowed to companies are taking advantage of the lack of minimum standards
seafarer and the flag state of the effectively continue without (compared with other North West European states), and engaging
ship on which they are working, formal complaints being lodged seafarers on rates of pay below the minimum wage.
they could not be paid at a by individual seafarers. A • Contrary to statements made by the Chamber of Shipping, if the
differential rate from resident further update will be given in government allow the legislation to continue in its current form the
seafarers of the flag state. next month’s RMT News. future for the remaining UK seafarers will become increasingly
The government will later precarious.
Homage to an
GLASGOW RMT shipping branch Written by John and Willy Maley in
recently helped put on a play recalling 1990 as a tribute to their father, the
the experiences of James Maley, who play was brought to the attention of
fought in the British battalion of the KAYOS theatre company by RMT
anti-fascist International Brigades to member Jim McKnight.
defend Spanish democracy in 1936. Play director Mark Barclay ensured
The branch put £500 towards that the production recognised the
production costs to stage ‘From Calton courage and conviction of those that
to Catalonia’. This prison drama tells went to Spain because “they could see
the story of how James travelled from no other way” to alert the world to the
Calton, in the east end of Glasgow, to dangers of fascism.
Spain. After being captured during the
battle of Jarama, he spent six months
in a fascist prison in Salamanca. The
play relates how James’ mother
recognised him from a newsreel in a
local cinema and convinced the
projectionist to make a photo from the
film negatives. RMT member Jim McKnight(left) with director
Mark Barclay and Willy Maley.
RMTnews :: may 2005
The Tolpuddle Martyrs were transported to the penal colonies of
Australia after forming a trade union. Tim Lezard examines their
legacy and discovers we have a lot to thank them for.
As the sun rose on February Under an obscure 1797 law, a week – the equivalent of 30p was later called his ‘Song of
24 1834, Dorset farm labourer Loveless and five fellow workers in today’s money and the third Freedom’. Its emotive and
George Loveless set off to work, – his brother James, James wage cut in as many years. rousing chorus of ‘We raise the
saying goodbye to his wife Hammett, James Brine, Thomas With the bloody French watchword, liberty. We will, we
Betsy and their three children. Standfield and his son John - Revolution still very much in will, we will be free!” underlined
They were not to meet alone were charged with having taken the minds of the British the Martyrs’ determination and
again for three years, for as he an illegal oath. establishment, landowners were has inspired generations of
left his cottage in the rural But their real crime in the determined to stamp out any people to fight against injustice
village of Tolpuddle, he was eyes of the establishment was to form of insurrection. and oppression.
served with a warrant for his have formed a trade union to And so when Loveless’ “If it hadn’t been for that
arrest. protest about their meagre pay landowner, James Frampton, song, I don’t think the Martyrs
of six shillings caught wind of a group of his would have had such a big
workers having formed a union, impact,” says Jan Pickering,
he sent a spy to infiltrate their curator of the Tolpuddle
meetings. Museum. “After all, thousands of
These gatherings, held under people were being transported,
a sycamore tree in the village or so what made them martyrs? I
in the upper room of think it was because the words
Thomas Standfield’s were so simple, so moving.”
cottage, were prefaced “Loveless was laying out
with the swearing of an what they were trying to do and
oath of secrecy – and it telling people they had done
was this act that led to the nothing wrong, questioning why
men’s arrest and subsequent they were being transported for
sentence of seven years’ trying to get better pay.”
transportation. The song had an immediate
By handing out such a impact for the working class
harsh sentence, the rose up in support of the
government hoped to frighten Martyrs, delivering an 800,000-
the nascent Labour movement strong petition to Parliament
into submission, but they protesting about their sentence
achieved precisely the opposite and demanding their pardon
and were quite unprepared for and release.
the public outcry that ensued. After three years, during
As the men were being led which the trade union
back to prison to await their movement sustained the
transfer to the prison hulks, Martyrs’ families by collecting
their hands manacled together, voluntary donations, the
their heads shaven like common government relented and the
criminals, George Loveless men returned home as heroes.
scribbled some words that were Every year their contribution
to change the course of British is remembered at the Tolpuddle
law. Festival, held in the village
In desperation, he wrote what where it all began.
Wreaths laid on the grave of martyr James Hammett
may 2005 :: RMTnews
The annual South West TUC event
attracts over 8,000 people who enjoy the
George Loveless was a Methodist lay
preacher and as such was determined to
mixture of politics, theatre and music. keep to the law and not take violent
There is also a procession of colourful steps of the machine-wreckers or rick-
trade union banners through the village, burners, protesting about unemployment
which passes the aging sycamore under caused by the advance of the industrial
which Loveless convened the historic revolution.
meetings. “In those times there was no full
Their legacy – to establish in law the democracy – you couldn’t vote unless The Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Festival takes place
right to belong to a trade union – was a you were a landowner – so for many on Saturday, July 16 and Sunday, July 17.
key step in the fight for workers’ rights. people, their only response was through
“They weren’t the first trade violent means but the Martyrs were Speakers include Tony Benn and TUC
unionists, but their victory meant the act religious men and wanted to protest General Secretary Brendan Barber.
of forming a trade union became not peacefully,” says Nigel Costley.
only legal, but part of British society,” “They set out to defend their basic There are also international speakers:
says Nigel Costley, Regional Secretary of rights for them and their families and to Burmese TUC general secretary Maling
the South West TUC. do it legally. Because they wanted to Maung and a leading member of the
“They are still relevant today because work within the law to reform the Fensuagro, the Colombian Agricultural
the extreme problems they faced are still system, rather than bring it down, they Union.
being experienced in some parts of the were a more potent threat to the
world. establishment’s vested interests.” Artists playing include Billy Bragg, Hank
“We remember them and share our And, as the establishment continues Wangford and the Lost Cowboys and The
solidarity with workers who are facing to try to protect those interests, it is Sidekicks. : Information 0117 947 0521 or
the same battles for the fundamental worth recalling what might have lain in www.tuc/org.uk/tolpuddle.
rights to gather together, to speak with store had it not been for the six brave
one voice and to advance their lives.” men of Tolpuddle. The event is free.
The Grand Procession at the Tolpuddle Martyr Fesitival
RMTnews :: may 2005
WILTS AND DORSET
Members at Wilts and
Dorset Bus Company will feel right at
home when they pop into their new
learning centre - it's a bus! The new
mobile facility will drive to depots,
Union Learning Reps Kevin Saunderson, ‘Baggy’ Bagwell, Dave Wyatt,
bringing learning closer to bus workers Brian Lewis
FOR A FEW years now learning colleges to discuss creating After a nearly a year of hard to help out and answer
has been on the agenda at Wilts learning opportunities in or near work the bus had two open questions.
and Dorset Bus. It started with the workplace and the idea of a days, one at Poole and one at Courses are being designed to
Poole and District Bus RMT learning bus took form. Salisbury. Over 120 bus fit in with shift work and the
branch secretary Peter Gale and To turn the idea into reality workers visited the open days, Learning Bus is currently
Salisbury 3 branch secretary Joe was going to take a lot of hard where they had the opportunity timetabled to visit Poole and
Hayes getting trained up as work and money. to talk to tutors and reps, and to Salisbury each week, although
Union Learning Reps. They then Teresa Williams, Regional have a go on the laptops. reps ‘Baggy’ Bagwell, at
recruited other reps, the first of Development Worker from the Wilts and Dorset learning Ringwood, and Dave Wyatt, at
whom was Brian Lewis. Brian Rail Union Learning reps are now busy setting up Lymington, have been
took on the responsibility of Programme, was brought in to courses and workshops based on inundated with requests.
being the ‘lead’ Union Learning coordinate the project. what members have asked for, The learning reps at Wilts
Rep. The company donated a bus including computing, languages and Dorset are hoping that the
Early in 2003, the reps, and agreed to pay the running and sign language. project goes from strength to
RMT’s education officer Ray costs, and Teresa managed to There has already been an IT strength to providing
Spry-Shute and the TUC met secure funding for refitting and course at Poole and learning rep opportunities to learn and
with the company and local laptop computers. Kevin Saunderson was on hand making a real difference.
may 2005 :: RMTnews
Adult Learner’s Week
WHAT IS ADULT LEARNERS’ WEEK? HOW IS RMT AND THE RAIL UNION LEARNING
You may also want to look at
Rail Union Learning Project
More information about how the
RMT is working with other
transport unions to promote
ADULT LEARNERS’ Week is the UK’s largest PROJECT GETTING INVOLVED?
lifelong learning and education
festival and celebration of adult learning The Rail Union Learning Project is
for its members - www.rul.org.uk
celebrated every year in over 40 countries. It organising various Adult Learner Week
is an opportunity for adults to have a go at activities throughout the week at different Campaign for Learning
something new by trying out one of the locations across the country. Activities range
Details about Learning at Work
hundreds of free taster sessions that happen from French and Spanish classes in Brighton,
Day, Family Learning Weekend.
across England during the week, and an courses to help you get to grips with your
opportunity for colleges to show adults what personal finances in London, and IT courses
is on offer. in York. All free of charge. learning.org.uk
Learning is not just what you did at If you want to find out about courses or
Time to Learn
school. It doesn’t have to involve classrooms, activities in your area you can call the Rail
assignments or exams. Union Learning Project office on 0207 317
The on-line version of City &
In England, colleagues in colleges, libraries, 8610/8611/or 8613 for more information. Guilds directory of learning
museums, businesses, voluntary and a range Alternatively, if you know who your local Rail breaks and study tours.
of other sectors hold thousands of events to Union Learning Representative (RULR) is, you www.timetolearn.org.uk
inspire adults to try their hand at something could ask them if they can point you in the
new. Anything up to 100,000 people take part, direction of local events. Workers Educational Association
encouraging activity through publicity For general information about Adult The national website of the WEA,
distributed by national and local organisers. Learner’s Week, if you have internet access the UK's largest voluntary
Twenty thousands enquiries to learndirect and you can find out more at provider of adult learning
routinely around 2,000 press articles http://www.niace.org.uk/ALW/2005/. opportunities.
appearing in national, regional and local press www.wea.org.uk
testify to the success of the campaign.
ENJOYING A LEARNING EXPERIENCE
RMT member Keith Skivington at local colleges. got a bit rusty over the years. who could do with brushing
works as a Groundsman at Keith responded straight In his job as a groundsman up their skills but they don’t
Eurostar in Ashford, Kent. away saying that he’d like to at Ashford, Keith needs to use make the time for it. I would
He is the latest Eurostar do French, IT and maths. maths on a daily basis. encourage anyone to do the
employee to benefit from the Keith has already started a “If I’m painting a room it same, whatever level they are,”
Rail Union Learning Project. In maths course at the local Adult saves waste and money if I he says.
February this year, Keith’s Education college with a view can calculate the area and the Keith says his rep, Wendy,
switched from working as an to sitting a National Certificate necessary volume of paint has been really supportive and
OCS contractor to being a (Level 1 numeracy) in June correctly before I get helpful and the tutors at the
Eurostar employee at Ashford and he is signed up to start underway,” he says. college have been great too.
International. French and IT in May. Getting back into learning “No one there takes the
Within a few weeks of his Having left school at 15 has given Keith a good deal of mickey. Everyone else in the
Eurostar contract starting, his and joined the army before personal satisfaction and workshop is just like me:
local Rail Union Learning Rep working for Eurostar, Keith confidence. people who’ve got off their
(RULR), Wendy Dale, had had passed army certificates “It’s nice to feel like I’m backsides and made the effort
already been in touch to find and a City and Guilds using my brain again. to better themselves and get
out if he’d be interested in qualification in numeracy but I reckon there are a lot of their brains into gear,” he said.
doing various courses on offer he found that these skills had people like me on the railways
RMTnews :: may 2005
TRADE UNIONISTS M
NO TO THE EU CONST
Tony Benn explains why...
I have just finished reading a
little pamphlet produced by
the campaign Trade Unionists
movement have been central to
the struggles waged by
generations of pro-democracy
damage this attempt to create a
superstate and centralise power
in Europe. However, if not we
Against the EU Constitution and campaigners, from the Chartists must be prepared to fight for a
it is one of the best things I to the Suffragettes, to ensure no vote here in a referendum
have read on the subject. that ordinary citizens could hold expected next spring.
It brilliantly and concisely their rulers to account. It will be a hard fight as the
exposes the fundamentally So it shall have to be again pro-constitution side will have
undemocratic nature of these as future generations will not huge funding from the
plans and should be read by look kindly on us if we stand by government and Brussels.
anyone who wants to find out and allow our democracy to be However, if the labour
more about the subject. taken away. movement does not campaign
An at-a-glance guide at the loudly on this issue then the
front of the book neatly exposes REFERENDUM siren calls of the far right will
how wide-ranging this assault Later this month the French gain ground and the poison of
on democracy really is. will be voting in a referendum racism and chauvinism will
For instance, articles turn the on this crucial issue. spread.
liberalisation – a polite term for French opposition to the This is one of the crucial
privatisation – of services and Constitution is growing as more questions of our times and
industries into constitutional and people discover what is TUAEUC have done us a service
principles. DEMOCRACY actually contained within this by producing this easy-to-read
This is of great importance The fundamental problem is huge and virtually unreadable guide and I heartily recommend
for all transport workers as it that the Constitution takes away document. it to you.
would preclude governments democratic rights to remove If it is rejected it would
from owning or investing in those who govern us.
transport services. This represents a massive
Road, rail and shipping transfer and centralisation of
industries across the EU must power in the hands of
develop only on the whims of institutions that are not
the so-called “free market”. accountable or transparent.
This approach has already This would increase the
seen the decimation of transport number of laws being imposed
industries in Britain, with on Europeans from highly
shareholders taking precedence diverse countries that had no
over the travelling public. democratic mandate within
How can anyone describe a those countries.
document that elevates right There are many things that
wing neoliberal economic policy need correcting with the UK
into a legal requirement claim constitution, including the
this Constitution is an exercise unelected second chamber and
in democracy? the way in which the prime
It also militarises the EU and minister can use Crown powers
creates a single foreign policy, to by-pass parliament.
develops a European police However, these more local
force which will be immune democratic deficits would not be
from prosecution, increases aided by the emasculation of
unfair trade with the world’s power from Westminister to
poor and hands massive powers Brussels.
to those we do not elect. The trade union and labour Trade Unionists Say No to the EU Constitution is available free from RMT, Unity House,
39 Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD.
may 2005 :: RMTnews
MUST SAY PRESIDENT’S
TITUTION AT TIME of writing, the Rail Against
Privatisation campaign is in full
swing. On behalf of the union, I
would like to expresses thanks and
appreciation to those members
Catalyst the small transitional costs
of taking the railways back into
public ownership would
subsequently reap huge savings for
EU CONSTITUTION AT A who volunteered to take the long Savings would be accrued from
GLANCE journey from Scotland to London
and the many others who turned
reduced bureaucracy and an end to
leakages to private providers of
out to support them at meetings finance.
THE POWER TO PRIVATISE along the way. On a conservative estimate
Article III-147 gives the EU powers to enforce Thanks should also go to Geoff overall immediate cash savings of
privatisation in any area of economic activity: “A Revell and Larry Cotton for all the taking Network Rail, TOC’s and
European framework law shall establish the measures in hard work they put in organising Roscos in public ownership would
order to achieve the liberalisation of a specific service.” this huge task. be £500 million a year. In addition,
Some have asked why did RMT taking renewals back in house
A THREAT TO PUBLIC SERVICES carry out such a campaign when it would save £400 million per
Article I-15 gives the EU new powers to 'co-ordinate' is clear that rail privatisation has annum.
been a failure. Well, RAP has So public ownership would
economic, employment and social policies. Article III-210
exposed just how disastrous this deliver total savings of £900 million
lists the almost unlimited areas of social policy where the
experiment has been and how a year, £4.5 billion over the lifetime
EU will have the right to 'support and complement' the
much the travelling public has been of a Labour government.
activities of member states.
ripped-off. Private sector investment would
UNELECTED IN CHARGE For instance, before privatisation also not be threatened, as some
in 1994 over 90 per cent of trains politicians have claimed, as all
Article 1-26 confirms the sole right of the unelected on the publicly-owned railway ran private sector investment is
European Commission to draw up new laws and Article to time. By comparison, in the year ultimately paid from by taxpayers
111-188 orders member states “not to seek to influence to 31 December 2004, the and farepayers.
the….European Central Bank”, the unelected body that privatised network could only Catalyst warn “without direct
decides economic policy for the eurozone. deliver just over 80 per cent of public control over costs, money
services on time. spent in support of the rail industry
ANTI-UNION LAWS TO REMAIN Moreover, the £4.5 billion in will prove unsustainable, creating
Article II-88 states that workers have rights to public subsidy now paid to the pressure to shift the burden to
collective bargaining and to take strike action only "in railway is more than three times the passengers through fare rises and
accordance with national laws and practices". public subsidy paid to British Rail. cuts to services”.
A recent report by the Indeed, the new Railways Act
THREAT TO CIVIL LIBERTIES Independent think tank Catalyst will make it easier to reduce the
Article II-112 allows "limitations" of basic human calculated that £800 million a year size of the network raising
rights "if they are necessary and genuinely meet is taken out of the industry as concerns over line closures, service
objectives of general interest recognised by the Union". returns to private lenders and reductions and job losses.
Article II-114 forbids any political campaigning to investors – a total leakage of more The SRA’s Community Rail
reverse any aspects of the Charter of Fundamental Rights. than £6 billion since 1996. Development Strategy could also
Last year’s Labour Party result in further cuts to our rural
MILITARISATION conference voted overwhelmingly and branch lines.
to return the railways to the public, Closing lines and services will
Article I-16 states: "Member states shall actively and
an aspiration contained within the further prevent the government
unreservedly support the Union's common foreign and
first Blair government manifesto in from reaching its domestic
security policy in a spirit of loyalty and mutual
1997. emissions targets.
solidarity". Two consecutive Labour In addition, the Royal Academy
governments have ignored these of Engineering has recently
realities and the three major parties estimated road congestion costs
Article III-276 gives the EU the right to extend the made no serious mention of the the UK £15 billion a year.
“structure, operation, field of action and tasks” of its wider issues on transport. Yet Therefore, the campaign to
police force, whose agents, like other EU officials, enjoy transport is the lifeblood of the defend and expand our transport
immunity from criminal prosecution. nation and is too vital to be network must continue.
ignored. This is part of the wider
DEATH PENALTY So RMT had to take to the campaign for taxpayers’ hard-
Article 1-62 says no-one shall be condemned to the streets to get the message out that earned money to be spent on
death penalty. However, the article “explanations” allows re-nationalisation makes political, public services, including hospitals,
the death penalty “in respect of acts committed in time economic and moral sense. education and pensions and not on
of war or of imminent threat of war”. According to the think-tank illegal wars in Iraq.
RMTnews :: may 2005
AND THE NHS
A health service nightmare from SSP leader Colin Fox
I nearly fell out of bed recently when I
woke up with John Reid. My clock radio
alarm goes off, and on comes Today on
an apparent new Labour conundrum on the
Labour repeats again and again that
Radio Four for a while before its time to get ‘spending on the NHS is at record levels’
up and get the kids out to school. and that ‘we [new Labour] have embarked
‘What the National Health Service needs upon the most ambitious hospital building
most’ said Labour’s Health Minister, ‘is programme the NHS has ever seen’.
greater entrepreneurial spirit.’ If this is the case, then why are worries
At first I wasn’t sure if I had heard him about the state of the NHS not at the top of
right as I had just woken up. But like all their list of concerns right now?
government spokesmen programmed to Could it be that their experiences are at
return to his ‘on message’ mantra it was odds with Labour claims?
just a few seconds before I heard him say it After all finding an NHS dentist, for
again. example is proving more difficult that
He was chastising GPs and dentists for finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
their lack of ‘entrepreneurial spirit’ in the Or could it be that people are furious that
way they run their small businesses. all these new hospitals are owned, not by
Now, to me, the NHS is based completely the NHS, but by ‘entrepreneurs’ who rake in
upon a simple formula – ‘If you are ill, you have been trying to rip off our NHS. They a fortune over the lifetime of the contracts?
get treatment.’ As soon as anyone starts to occasionally succeed. Just take a look at the Edinburgh’s new flagship hospital, the
talk about ‘entrepreneurial spirit’ I begin to profits of the pharmaceutical companies Royal Infirmary, is a case in point. Owned
hear the ‘ting-ting’ of cash tills and the over the decades for examples. by the Royal Bank of Scotland, it was built
compromising of an ideal. The formula is Yet here was John Reid with proof plain for less than £300 million, yet will cost the
suddenly amended to ‘If you are ill and can that the same ‘entrepreneurs’ and NHS nearly £700 million over its 25 year
afford £6.50 for a prescription; to see a businessmen we had been striving to keep at life.
private dentist; to consult a health bay for half a century were now past the If Labour is spending record sums on the
entrepreneur- you can get treatment’. NHS security gates and sitting in the head NHS it is shameful that so much of it is
I know the terms of this debate inside office. wasted on profits for those with
out. For 50 years the same entrepreneurs To me this episode also began to answer ‘entrepreneurial spirit.’
WOMENS PAGE may 2005 :: RMTnews
politicians of all shades seem that can only be carried out
THE RIGHT TO CHOOSE willing to help them. This is not
right or democratic.
after a certain time.
The pretext for cutting time
RMT member Janine Booth looks at the threat to As a long-standing pro- limits is usually that medical
choice slogan says, "Not the advances have made it possible
abortion rights following the general election church, not the state - women for foetuses to survive outside
must decide our fate". the womb at an earlier stage.
STATEMENTS MADE during the abortions - it is between illegal,
We may well see an attempt These advances are welcome,
General Election campaign unsafe abortions, safe, legal
in Parliament to cut the time and should be used to help
suggest that women's abortion ones.
limit for legal abortion from the premature babies, to spare
rights could soon come under Before 1967, rich women
current 24 weeks to 20 weeks. parents the heartbreak of losing
attack. could usually buy their way
Relatively few abortions are a baby they love and want - not
One in three women in around the law and pay a doctor
carried out between 20 and 24 to force women to bear children
Britain has an abortion. Think to carry out a termination. It
weeks, but there are several they do not want.
about how many women you was working-class women who
good reasons why a woman The best ways to reduce the
know - family, friends, suffered in the backstreets. This
might leave it this late: number of late abortions is to
workmates. One third of them is why the trade-union
• She may have been obstructed reduce unwanted pregnancy
will at some point terminate a movement supports women's
by an anti-abortion doctor. and to improve access to
pregnancy. right to choose free, legal
Every one has her reason. abortion. • Her circumstances might have earlier abortions.
For many, it is a difficult choice. Leaders of several religions - changed - her partner might This could be achieved by
But it is her choice. including a Catholic archbishop, have left her, or may have better sex education, free
The film 'Vera Drake' the Chief Rabbi, and a started to beat or abuse her effective contraception and the
reminded us what happened representative of the Muslim (more common in pregnancy removal of the need for two
before 1967, when abortion was Council of Britain - have than you might think). doctors' permission to have an
still illegal. Women went to recently called for restrictions • A young woman might have abortion.
backstreet abortionists, and on women's abortion rights. been afraid to come forward Ironically, the religious
some were injured or died. These religious authorities earlier. authorities that attack abortion
In our society, there will want to impose their views not rights usually also oppose these
• An older woman may have
always be women facing a crisis just on their own congregations, measures. We have to reject
mistaken the signs of
pregnancy who choose abortion. but on all women. And despite their moralising and defend
pregnancy for the menopause.
The choice that society faces is the low level of religious women's right to control our
• Serious foetal disability may own bodies.
not between abortions and no observance in this country,
have been discovered by tests
RMTnews :: may 2005
STOP THE WAR
The story of Britain's
biggest mass movement
T essa Jowell's bizarre attempt
to prevent Britain's biggest-
ever demonstration from
would throw herself under a bus
for the Prime Minister," they
recall. "But she thought better of
demolish the lies about weapons
of mass destruction, alleged
Iraqi links to al-Qaida and the
war in Iraq, the dodgy dossier of
lies about Iraqi weapons, the
first great demonstration on
trampling the Hyde Park lawn is throwing herself in front of a supposed desire to "liberate" September 28, 2002 and the
one of the many gems retold in million marchers.” Iraqis and to show that the Bush historic, global events of
Stop the War: The story of This is a superb book that regime was planning an attack February 15 2003.
Britain's biggest mass tells the story so far of the anti- on Iraq long before the They describe the
movement. war movement with clarity, September 11 attack on the New extraordinary people's assembly
The pro-war Culture passion and wit. York World Trade Centre. the following month, school
Secretary’s attempt to protect It is powerfully illustrated They show the centrality to students' revolts and the strikes
Hyde Park's grass from a million and punctuated with the drive to war of oil - or, and protests around Britain
protesters was foiled, of course, recollections, verses and rather, the ability to profit from when the Iraq war was
by the organisers’ refusal to testimony that demonstrate the it - and the strategic desire to unleashed.
budge, Michael Foot's offer to movement’s diversity and bolster Israel at the expense of This is a remarkable
lead the march into the park vitality. the Palestinians. historical document, but it is not
and massive public derision. They include RMT general And they describe how the a wistful look back at something
The irony of a member of a secretary Bob Crow’s speech at seeds of the movement were past and gone: it is the taking
government unleashing a war that record-smashing sown, how it caught, articulated stock of a vital work in
that has cost in excess of demonstration, as well as Tube and mobilised the popular anti- progress.
100,000 lives being so Workers Against the War activist war mood, and how it stood Derek Kotz
concerned about the well-being Unjum Mirza on how the against the racist backlash and Stop the War by Andrew Murray and
of the grass is not lost on the London Underground’s PA in defence of civil liberties.
book’s authors, Stop the War system was used to announce Murray and German take us Available to RMT News readers at the
reduced price of £12.99 from Bookmarks
Coalition chair Andrew Murray anti-war demonstrations. through the immediate post-
on 020 7637 1848, or in person at 1
and convenor Lindsey German. The authors use the September 11 days and the war Bloomsbury Street, London, WC1B 3QE –
"Ms Jowell once said she warmongers' own words to on Afghanistan, the build-up to quote ‘RMT offer’
may 2005 :: RMTnews
The Travellers’ Prayer Dear editor,
CLASSIFIED ADS Your sandwiches weren’t curly, that was just a joke,
I had an accident at work (Onllwyn washery
nr Neath, South Wales) on 6/7/2000 and
Your tea, somewhat insipid, was drunk by many folk, had to go sick due to my injuries.
FLORIDA But came a time when government thought it was going broke, Eventually, EWS freight company terminated
Sell you off, make money, was indeed their hope, my employment through ill-health in 2003
INDIAN WELLS KISSIMMEE Villas
10% discount on rates for RMT So you were broken into pieces by the secretary of state,
after 43 years service.
members. Beautiful 3 bedroom 2 Through the RMT magazine I would like to
And sold off as regions that we soon began to hate,
bathroom villa in Florida5 minutes drive express my thanks and gratitude to John
from Disney. Exceptionally central Their safety record is a sheer disgrace, Kilmister, solicitor for Patteson and Brewer,
location. Own pool with screen porch For accidents seem common place, who took up the case against EWS. His
and overlooking a lake. Will sleep 8 and
cot facilities are available. As I stand upon this platform, among the dirt and grime, excellent work finally brought my claim to a
Tel. 01202 427854 successful conclusion.
I soon begin to realise that my train won’t be on time,
www.indianwellskissimmeevillas.co.uk I would also like to thank Swansea No1
That’s the third time this week I hear commuters wail,
branch secretary Ken Thomas for his
Dear Lord, all is forgiven, please bring back British Rail excellent help, guidance and support.
FLORIDA, Kissimmee, luxury villa. CD
RLF Cox Yours sincerely
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additional discount for RMT members
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hotels, visit: www.budget-airport-
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2766 for a quote. ACROSS DOWN
7 Predating; before (7) 1 pertaining to reality - not fictional (7)
8,11 Parcels firm, part of 22group, in low-pay 2 In the open air (8)
dispute with RMT (7,4,4) 3 Headgear, worn stereotypically by French
I would like to introduce fellow RMT 9 Withhold food (6) people (6)
members to TAYCASA VILLAS, Spanish
Property specialists. We can now offer 10 See 8 (4,4) 4 Not said, implicit (8)
members our cashback scheme on 11 Bans -- from licenesed premises? (4) 5 Thieved (6)
selected properties which are already
12 Even (or smarmy) quality (10) 6 Arrangement of straps for attaching
amongst the best quality and value. For
details call QUOTING RMT 13 To incorpoarate into the basic wage (11) equipment to body, or vice versa (7)
01674 678 7255 18 Takes or breaks apart (10) 8 Pupil (11)
21 socially inept, anorak wearer, perhaps (4) 14 One who adheres scrupulously to the rules
OTHER 22 Other half of 8,11 parent company (8) (8)
Excellent Potential. This could be the 23 Those delegated to transact business -- 15 Inclination, or party faction (8)
way to the extra earnings you may have could be estate or secret (6) 16 Scrubbed, erased, no longer listed (7)
been looking for. For details visit 17 Male sibling or fellow union member (7)
24 Conducted oneself (well or badly) (7)
25 small axe -- could be buried (7) 19 One who is on the run or banished (6)
20 Sailor, as in NUS (6)
RMTnews :: may 2005
HOW TO JOIN THE CREDIT UNION
To join the RMT Credit Union you need to fill in an attempt to combat Money Laundering, has imposed strict
application form and supply us with proof of your identity identification rules on anyone wishing to open a Bank or
and address. Being an existing RMT member, you may Building Society account. Unfortunately, it has applied the
wonder why we need proof of who you are and where you same rules and regulations to Credit Unions.
live. It is because the Financial Services Authority, in an
There are two methods of supplying us with the documentation:-
METHOD 1 Send or take your original documents, 1 from List A & 1 from List B, direct to RMT Credit, Unity House, FREEPOST, 39
Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD. If sending valuable documents such as your passport or current full UK Driving Licence we
strongly advise sending them by recorded delivery. We will photocopy the originals and return them to you.
METHOD 2 Take one original document from list A and one from list B to your Branch Secretary or any of the above approved
persons listed below:-
q Delegated Officer of the Branch
q Divisional Organiser
q Executive Committee Member
q Credit Union Officer
q Post Master / Sub Post Master s Person with honours / peerage
q Authorised Financial Intermediary s Full Time Trade Union Official
q Councillor (local or county) s Member of Parliament
q Minister of Religion s Justice of the Peace
q Commissioner for oaths s Lawyer
q Banker s Teacher
q Doctor s Accountant
q Police Officer s Dentist
The Branch Secretary or other approved person will check the original documentation; will take a photocopy, sign, and Branch
stamp.All proof of identity / address must bear your name, and not be solely in the name of partner etc; but can be in addition to
Satisfactory proof of identity will include, but not be limited to the following:
Current signed Passport.
Current Full UK old style Driving Licence (not old style Provisional Licence) [if not used as evidence of address].
Original Inland Revenue tax notification e.g. tax assessment, statement of account, notice of coding – valid for current year.
Pension Book or Benefits Book or original notification letter from the Benefits Agency confirming your right to benefits (if not used as evidence of address).
Shotgun or firearms certificate.
ID pass and safety cards for the following companies: Network Rail, Trans Pennine Express, Central Trains
Discharge Book (shippers only - current).
Satisfactory proof of address will include, but not be limited to the following:
Original Local Authority Council Tax bill valid for the current year.
Current UK photo card Driving Licence.
Current Full UK old style Driving Licence (not old style Provisional Licence).
A Utility Bill e.g. Electricity, Gas, Water or Telephone bills. These must be originals and less than 3 months old. Mobile ‘phone bills are NOT acceptable.
Bank, building society or credit union statement – within last 3 months.
Mortgage statement from a recognised lender – within last 12 months.
Pension Book or Benefits Book or original notification letter from the Benefits Agency confirming your right to benefits (if not used as evidence of address).
Original Inland Revenue tax notification, letter, notice of coding, P60 or P45.
Original housing association or letting agency tenancy agreement.
Local council rent card or tenancy agreement
Original Solicitor’s letter confirming recent house purchase or Land Registry confirmation.
Household and motor Insurance certificates - current
Credit Union accounts may only be opened and transactions accepted when verification of identity and address has been completed and cross-referenced against RMT
membership.We are using the method of Direct Debit only and money will be deducted from your bank account on the 28th of each month. Please return completed forms and ID
documentation, as we need to make sure you comply with the money laundering regulations. Failing to complete all forms and ID documentation will delay us from setting up
your savings account.
RMT CREDIT UNION LTD.
Finance Department, Unity House, 39 Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD
RMT CREDIT UNION APPLICATION FORM – please complete your
application along with the attached Direct Debit.
P l e a s e u s e B L O C K C A P I TA L S and black ink.
1 PERSONAL DETAILS.
Mobile phone Postcode
Date of Birth National Insurance Number
2 Your Employment.
Employer RMT Branch
3 Mr Mrs Ms Miss
4 Membership Status
RMT TU Member Retired RMT TU Member
5 How much do you wish to save £ This is the amount you wish to save in ‘shareholdings’ monthly by
Direct Debit (you must complete form below)
6 Normally your payments are made once a month (28th) to RMT Credit Union Ltd.
7 Next of Kin .....................................................................................
8 I undertake to abide by the rules now in force or those that are adopted.
Your signature Date
Instruction to your Bank or
Building Society to pay by Direct Debit
Please fill in the whole form including official use box using a ball point pen and Originator’s Identification Number
Send to: RMT Credit Union Ltd., 39 Charlton Street, London NW1 1JD
9 7 4 2 8 1
Name and full postal address of your Bank or Building Society
To: The Manager Bank/Building Society
FOR RMT CREDIT UNION LTD OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Postcode This is not part of the the instruction to your Bank or Building Society.
Name(s) of Account Holder(s)
Instructions to your Bank or Building Society.
Please pay RMT Credit Union Ltd Direct Debits for the account detailed in this instruction subject to the safeguards
Bank/Building Society account number assured by the Direct Debit Guarantee. I understand that this instruction may remain with RMT Credit Union Ltd, if
so, details will be passed electronically to my Bank/Building Society.
Branch Sort Code Signature(s)
Banks and Building Societies may not accept Direct Debit Instructions from some types of account
✂ This guarantee should be detached and retained by the Payer.
The Direct Debit Guarantee
q This guarantee is offered by all Banks and Building Societies that take part in the Direct Debit Scheme.The efficiency and security of the scheme is monitored and protected by your own Bank or
q If the amounts to be paid or the payment date changes, RMT Credit Union Ltd will notify you 10 working days in advance of your account being debited or as otherwise agreed
q If an error is made by RMT Credit Union Ltd or your Bank or Building Society, you are guaranteed a full and immediate refund from your branch of the amount paid
q You can cancel a Direct Debit at any time by writing to your Bank or Building Society. Please also send a copy of your letter to us.
RMT fight back:
Our personal injury lawyers
won’t let bad employers get
away with it.
The law says workers have a right to safe conditions – and RMT is here to defend that right. That’s why our
Personal Injury Service is free – and even covers non-work related accidents for family members. So if you,
or a member of your family, have suffered an illness or injury due to someone else’s fault, call us now.
FOR FREE LEGAL ASSISTANCE CALL THE HELPLINE
0800 587 751? in England, Wales and Ireland
0800 328 1014 in Scotland
PROTECTING AND PROMOTING OUR MEMBERS’ INTERESTS.