EDF power workers on London Tube to strike for third time

RMT press release, issued today

RMT SHIFT workers responsible for fault-finding and maintaining the electrical supply to London’s Tube will begin their third 36-hour strike on Christmas night in a dispute over employer EDF Energy Powerlink’s refusal to concede a claim for pay-parity with permanent day workers.

Some 25 RMT 'shift testers', who work both night and day shifts, will not book on for turns that commence between 19:59 on Christmas night, December 25, and 07:59 on Saturday (December 27).

The third strike covers a period during which substantial maintenance work is done and is expected to result in delays to the network re-opening.

“Our members have already delivered two rock-solid 36-hour strikes, yet the company is still refusing to acknowledge a straightforward claim for pay parity,” RMT general secretary Bob Crow said today.

“Day-work staff rightly received a £3,000 increase for delivering flexibility, and their shift-working colleagues are simply seeking recognition of the flexibility they too have delivered, not least in accepting sweeping shift changes that have disrupted their work-life balance.

“EDF Energy is a massive transnational corporation that has made enormous profits, but at the same time as pleading poverty it is offering more than £1,000 a shift to management scabs prepared to cover work that they have little or no experience in.

“We have tried hard to reach a settlement and remain ready to talk, and it is time that EDF Energy took seriously a claim from highly skilled staff who do a crucial job in keeping London's Tube network moving," Bob Crow said.


Note to editors: Shift testers are responsible for the highly skilled work of finding and fixing faults at London Underground's more than 250 power sub-stations and maintaining the power supply.

In ballots that closed on October 28, RMT members voted by 21 to two for strike action and by 22 to one for action short of strikes.

Their first two 36-hour strikes were held between November 16 and 18 and December 7 and December 9, and since November 16 they have made themselves unavailable for work after the end of any turns unless there is a direct and imminent danger to human life.