Rail union calls more strikes

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The Independent Online
COMMUTERS face an autumn of disruption as signal workers' leaders yesterday defied threats of mass dismissal and called two more strikes, writes Barrie Clement.

The executive of the RMT transport union ordered a 48- hour stoppage covering the whole of Tuesday and Wednesday 14-15 September, followed by a day-long strike for the whole of Friday 23 September. A strike is also planned for next Thursday to coincide with an emergency motion tabled by the RMT for the Trades Union Congress in Blackpool.

Referring to an internal Railtrack document revealing that management is considering sacking strikers, Jimmy Knapp, leader of the RMT, said it demonstrated that the company's public call for negotiations was 'hypocritical'.

A confidential letter from Railtrack's legal department envisages a bill of up to pounds 16.5m for unlawfully sacking signal workers - more than three times the cost of settling the dispute.