ScotRail strikes off after RMT accepts pay offer
Strikes planned by ScotRail staff in the run up to Christmas have been called off after the RMT union accepted an increased pay offer.
Walk-outs were scheduled for successive Fridays and Saturdays but ScotRail management announced tonight that a 7.5% pay offer for staff such as conductors and ticket examiners with an 8.5% increase for lower-paid workers had been accepted.
Announcing the result of the ballot, the RMT said 67.7% of members who voted opted to accept the offer which the union had recommended.
The deal only applies to ScotRail employees and is separate to the current pay dispute and industrial action being taken by Network Rail staff who are members of the RMT.
Phil Campbell, ScotRail head of customer operations, said: “We worked hard to put forward an offer which recognises the hard work of staff, as well as the financial challenges faced by the railway as we recover from the pandemic.
“ScotRail, our staff, and our customers want to have a reliable, safe, and sustainable railway that supports the economy and connects communities across the country.
“By reaching agreement with the RMT, we can now focus fully on delivering a service which our customers expect and deserve.”
Transport Minister Jenny Gilruth said the deal was fair and affordable, offering “very real benefits” for staff.
“Sadly, this deal does not mean we will avoid the impacts of industrial action on Scotland’s railway disrupting travel plans in the months ahead.
“It is now incumbent on the UK government to allow the operators and RMT to get to the table and negotiate. Network Rail employees in Scotland deserve a pay deal too.”
The RMT said industrial action will be held across four 48-hour periods on 13-14 and 16-17 December, and 3-4 and 6-7 January.
Meanwhile Aslef union said train drivers at 12 rail companies, including Avanti West Coast which links Glasgow and London, are set to strike again on Saturday.
New offer to health staff
An improved pay offer averaging 7.5% has been made to NHS Scotland health workers and will now be considered by unions.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Health Secretary Humza Yousaf were involved in “extensive” talks ahead of this latest proposal.
The Unite and GMB unions have suspended action by ambulance staff and confirmed that the offer will be put to members in a ballot.
Unite’s Scottish Ambulance Service members had planned a work-to-rule on Friday and 1,700 GMB members were scheduled to begin a 26-hour strike on Monday.