ATC in depots dispute - ballot papers dispatched


Despite the best efforts of your representatives to seek agreement with London Underground to ensure the safety of staff working in and around Depots and Sidings on the SSR/SSL the company have stated that the use of Automatic Train Control (ATC) is imposed at these sites without mitigations for our Fleet Maintenance members. It is your representatives' firm belief that Train Operators should be driving the train across these sites as Fleet Maintenance staff will be working in these areas and ATC is designed to detect another train and avoid collision - the intended purpose is not to help ensure the safety of staff who are working in Depots and Sidings.

Your union has exhausted all the means available to us in seeking an agreement with London Underground for an appropriate and safe method of working at these sites for our members in Fleet Maintenance. Health and Safety is a shared responsibility, but London Underground's position is that in Depots and Sidings it should fall solely on the shoulders of staff working there and without any additional safeguard in the form manual control by the Train Operators. A Director's Review upheld the earlier decision and London Underground have declined your union's requests for the matter to be referred to ACAS for an agreement to be sought.

All the attempts by your union to resolve this matter through discussion have failed. As London Underground are imposing the use of ATC at these sites and have declined further discussion on the matter your National Executive Committee have instructed that our affected Fleet Maintenance members are balloted for industrial action. Ensuring the safety of members should be the only non-negotiable point - instead, the company are declining to negotiate how this can be best achieved and instead imposing a method of working that is unsafe.

I have informed the Company that we are now in dispute with them and that members will be balloted for industrial action.

The ballot has since opened, and all affected members are urged to vote 'YES' for strike action and 'YES' to action short of a strike to demand that LUL enter negotiation with your union with a view to agreeing a method of working that best ensures the safety of Fleet Maintenance staff in SSR/SSL Depots and Sidings.

Ballot papers have been dispatched and must be returned to the independent scrutineer Civica by no later than First Post, Thursday 26th August 2021.

Members are urged vote 'YES' for strike action and 'YES' for action short of a strike in the upcoming ballot to ensure a safe workplace.

I will keep members informed of all further developments in this matter.