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Tube strike: Central line staff to take industrial action over ticket office closures

11:34 28 August 2014

Gants Hill station

Gants Hill station's ticket office is one of many in London set for closure

Archant

Staff on the Tube are to stage to fresh industrial action in a long-running row over ticket office closures.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) will ban overtime and refuse to take part in courses from next Wednesday.

Unions have been in dispute over the closures, and loss of hundreds of jobs, since last year, and have staged mass walk-outs that caused significant disruption on the Central line in Redbridge.

RMT acting general secretary Mick Cash said: “This next phase of action has been called for the clear and simple reason that London Underground has failed to engage in serious discussions over cash-led cuts to jobs, services and safety.”

He added: “RMT has scrutinised the details and it is clear to us that many locations will be left without sufficient staff to safely and effectively run stations.”

Phil Hufton, London Underground’s chief operating officer, said: “We have been in constant dialogue with trades unions and staff over our plans to modernise and improve customer service on the Tube, and we will continue with these discussions.

“As a result of our plans we have guaranteed that there will be no compulsory redundancies, anyone who wants to stay with us can have a job and no one will lose pay providing they are prepared to be flexible.

“Today, less than 3 per cent of journeys involve a visit to a ticket office.

“This trend is set to continue with the introduction of contactless bank card payment from September 16 this year.

“In future we will have more staff visible and available to help our customers buy the right ticket, plan their journey and keep them safe and secure.

“The only way to resolve the issues raised is to continue talking and not threatening further industrial action.”

Last week, Aslef members working on the Central line downed tools for 24 hours in a dispute over what the union described as “management intransigence on a range of issues”.

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