Pay talks

Gilruth meets RMT’s Lynch to broker UK rail deal

Meeting: Jenny Gilruth and Mick Lynch are working together

Scotland’s Transport Minister Jenny Gilruth is attempting to broker a deal between the RMT Union and the UK Government to head off more rail strikes in the run up to Christmas.

Ms Gilruth has joined RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch to apply pressure on her Westminster counterpart Mark Harper to find a solution to the Network Rail pay dispute.

Although the dispute is at UK level, Scottish railways and passengers will be impacted by a series of proposed walkouts throughout December and into the new year.

After meeting Mr Lynch at Scotland House in London, Ms Gilruth said: “ScotRail members have, of course, voted to accept a negotiated fair pay offer, calling an end to their own industrial action, but Scotland still faces severe disruption as a result of the ongoing UK-wide dispute.

“It is vital that the UK Government allows the operators and RMT to get to the table and negotiate. I was extremely disappointed not to be able to meet the Secretary of State for Transport during my time in London.

“I had very much hoped to discuss with him the damaging impacts of disruption to passenger and freight services over the festive period.

“Network Rail employees and employees of the UK Government controlled rail companies in Scotland deserve a fair pay deal too.”

Mick Lynch said: “I had a very positive meeting with the Scottish Transport Minister, and it is to be welcomed that she is playing such an active role in providing assistance to resolve this UK wide dispute.

“Indeed, in Scotland and Wales, RMT has made settlements with the support of their respective governments but where companies are controlled by the UK government all we have seen is confrontation and chaos.

“I would urge the UK government to adopt the same pragmatic and constructive approach we have seen in Scotland and Wales so we can resolve this dispute and deliver a fair deal for passengers and workers.”

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