STAFF working on gatelines at ScotRail stations have voted against all-out strikes, but they have given the green light to other industrial action.
The result echoes the recent ballot of ScotRail train cleaners who also rejected walkouts, but the cleaners will begin an effective work to rule on 13 July by refusing to work overtime, rest days or in a higher grade until further notice.
ScotRail, which has welcomed the latest vote, said of the 163 gateline members entitled to vote in the ballot, 38.7 per cent voted to support strikes. As support for this latest RMT action did not meet the legal threshold of 40 per cent of the total number of people entitled to vote, the action has been rejected.
The operator is claiming that the outcome has added 'further pressure' on the RMT, which has declared several disputes since March in pursuit of a pay claim. However, the Scottish Government has made it clear there is no extra money available and the 'top priority for everyone should be to achieve the much-needed recovery of the railway’s financial stability'.
ScotRail’s head of customer operations Phil Campbell said: ‘The rejection of strike action by gateline staff is greatly appreciated. As we continue to welcome customers back to Scotland’s Railway, now is the time for everyone to work together to rebuild.
‘As we continue to face huge financial challenges, strike action over increased overtime payments would have been completely wrong for staff and customers.
‘Today’s result shows the approach of RMT bosses is increasingly out of sync with views of their own members, who want to create a more sustainable railway for the future and we call on the union’s leaders in Scotland to stop this damaging campaign of disruption.’
Earlier this week RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: ‘It defies belief that three months into these disputes Abellio are refusing to budge, refusing to meet us and have the apparent support of Transport Scotland and the SNP leadership. It is a scandal on Scotland's railways of epic proportions.’
Meanwhile, talks are due to begin at ACAS today in a bid to resolve the RMT's dispute with Caledonian Sleeper over a pay freeze. The RMT has welcomed a Parliamentary motion which calls on the Scottish Government to intervene.