RMT’s decision to continue the train strike next week “will punish millions”, the transport minister said.
Grant Shapps has warned that the UK is “at the peak of a major chaos that will bring misery to people across the UK”.
He also argued that unions have repeatedly urged unions to focus on negotiations instead of engaging in “destructive” industrial action.
Shapps said teens preparing for exams will face the added stress of changing travel plans and patients may have to cancel hospital appointments.
“Many people who don’t get paid if they can’t work face a situation where they lose money at times they can’t afford,” he added.
Talks have failed to resolve heated debates over salaries, jobs and conditions, and next week’s rail strike is set to become the largest in decades.
Descriptor: Here are all the details you need to know to overcome the confusion.
Labor union charged with ’employee bribery’
Strikes will be held on Tuesday, June 21, Thursday, 23rd and Saturday, June 25th.
Network Rail has warned that the strike will result in a six-day shutdown.
RMT’s executive director, Mick Lynch, said the rail network is losing thousands of jobs and workers are facing sub-inflationary pay increases.
Some of the large unions behind the action are now accused of “bribing” workers into strikes by Business Minister Kwasi Kwarteng.
The Sunday Telegraph claims that several unions are offering tax-free payments through “strike funds.”
The newspaper reported that Unite, which has threatened strikes across Parliament and across the bus network, is putting up posters on local government buildings advertising “70 pounds a day strike pay” to employees.
Meanwhile, nearly half of those asked in a new survey on conflict believe now is not the right time to strike.
A poll commissioned by the Rail Delivery Group found that 1 in 4 support the strike but 2 in 5 oppose it.
0:48 Rail strike ‘totally meaningless’ – transport sector
‘Pouring gasoline on fire’
Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer criticized the government’s handling of the dispute, arguing that the Conservatives were “pouring fuel on the fire.”
During a speech in Warwick on Sunday, he will accuse Boris Johnson and Sharps of actually wanting the strike to go on.
“Instead of spending time at the negotiating table this week, we’re designing offensive ads.”
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Transport said the government has committed £16 billion to keep railways running during the pandemic.
They said, “Railways are still alive, passenger numbers have fallen by 25% and driving more passengers out risks killing services and jobs.
“Train travel for millions of people is no longer an option, it’s a necessity. Strikes prevent customers from choosing rail and may never come back.”
In another situation that could provoke unions, the Sunday Times argues that the rail network is on the verge of closing all ticket offices at UK stations.
According to the newspaper, it has plans to phase out paper tickets to save up to £500 million a year.
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