Tube Drivers Could Strike On Boxing Day

It’s nearly time for the transport unions’ annual threat of strike action over the Christmas holiday period, and lo, ASLEF have obliged.

The union are entering into talks with Transport for London (TfL) over bank holiday pay — keen-eyed readers might remember that last year’s opening gambit was also a threat to ballot over strike action on Boxing Day…oh, and they did in 2010 as well, though in 2009 the RMT decided to take one for the team instead. Can anyone see a pattern emerging here?

The bone of contention (still) is an existing agreement between TfL and the unions which meant staff got extra annual leave and pay if they chose to work some bank holidays. ASLEF’s argument is that drivers are now working the majority of the bank holidays and therefore should get triple pay and a day off in lieu — although we’ve yet to find out if this year’s pay demand is the same as in previous years.

Photo by avail in the Londonist Flickr pool.

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  • Mark Walley

    I’m so confused, so currently if they work on a bank holiday, they get extra pay and a day off in-lieu, so they effectively get the bank holiday at some other time and paid more for one day? But they want triple pay now? Are they basically just saying “we want to be paid more on boxing day?”

    • andy

      There is no extra pay for working any bank holiday day. The deal was some bank holidays, the bone of contention is the service gets enhanced more and more so more drivers are required to work. It’s got to the point where staff are working a lot more bank holidays than they did when the agreement was 1st made, the confusing thing is there has been no public outcry for the ultra enhanced service, I’m sure people would accept that if you want to travel on boxing day there would be a later start and earlier finish with a train every 10 to 15 Minutes. That would give more staff boxing day off. Management insist on far too many trains

      • Mark Walley

        Ah, thanks for clarifying. Didn’t realise what the existing situation was.

  • Andy Brice

    At least ASLEF’s PR is unabashed about their aims, i.e “We’re going on strike because we want a better deal.” I find the RMT’s usual shtick of “We’re going on strike in the interests of our passengers.” disingenuous and insulting to the public’s intelligence.

  • Patrick

    Good on them. It’s only by fighting and standing up for their rights that the Tube workers have got a good deal. I work for a private sector company for shit pay but I applaud working people who stand up for themselves.

  • rob22t

    Why did I bother getting into so much debt at uni when I could have just worked on the Tube and earned twice as much as I do now!

    • RMT London Calling

      You know Rob there are lots of well educated people working on the tube. Don’t think that because you have been to University you are better than tube workers – you are not. You are the same as them.

  • RMT London Calling

    The reason that the ASLEF strike has continued for so long is that the situation hasn’t changed. The ‘pattern’ emerging is that ASLEF want less people working on Boxing Day and have stuck to that demand. RMT now has serious concerns because of LU’s new plan of allowing drivers to sell annual leave. There are a couple of stories about it here –

    We don’t ‘take one for the team’ – we are the team.