Tube strike October 2014: Conciliatory talks adjourned as dispute continues

A 48-hour strike is planned from 9pm on Tuesday 14 October

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The Independent Online

Talks aimed at averting a planned 48-hour Tube strike were adjourned last night - as the long-standing dispute over ticket office closures continues.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union (RMT) and London Underground (LU) staff spent Wednesday at the offices of the conciliation service Acas, but the two sides did not manage to reach a settlement.

An Acas spokesman said: “The parties have gone away to reflect on the discussions that have taken place.”

A TFL spokesman added that discussions were “on-going”.

The RMT has instructed members not to work any shifts between 9pm on Tuesday 14 October and 8.59pm on Thursday 16 October in protest against forthcoming modernisation of the Tube network.

 

LU and London Mayor Boris Johnson have both criticised the union for calling fresh strikes, which would coincide with national walkouts by council workers and civil servants in separate disputes over pay, jobs and cuts.

Phil Hufton, LU's chief operating officer described the strike action as “pointless”.

He said: “This action and the timing of it - to coincide with public sector strikes that have nothing to do with London Underground - is cynical in the extreme. It will only lose RMT members pay and disrupt Londoners.”

RMT general secretary Mick Cash said the union would “not stand back and allow Government-driven austerity cuts to hollow out the Tube system and leave it as a dangerous shell.“

He added that the RMT was “looking to make serious progress on the issues that lie at the heart of this dispute”.

Unions have been campaigning against plans to close ticket offices since they were unveiled last year.

London Underground say few tickets are bought at offices now, arguing that staff would be better used by being stationed on concourses.

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