Southern Rail Strike: Staff should use alternatives to 5 day strikes says Ex TSSA member and delegate

I generally agree with the rail staff that it is wrong for all sorts of reasons to have no guards on the trains.

There ought to be a new or more effective alternative to strikes as long as five days where it jeopardises the economy, other people’s jobs, those who need to work or visit hospitals, or  attend other essential appointments. Or they should find ways to ‘work with commuters’ but still targeting Govia in another way.  Right now, rail users are being held to ransom, though many do agree with the strikers, but disagree with the way they are doing it. A five day strike is completely unreasonable.

The workplace is often stressful enough without the extra worry of being late for work, and the threat of being sacked. The low  and unpaid  will be  particularly badly effected as many of them do not have cars to use as an alternative to the train. Those of us in rural areas have trouble even getting any buses, some don’t even start until 9.30am and finish at 5.. Others may have already taken their holiday and don’t have any left.

You never near of any striking staff member offering to help anyone needing  to work or to visit the hospital.  No they are out their standing with placards picketing and chatting on telly. If they helped people get to work, then perhaps the Strikers could get more respect.  It would be good if commuters would help car share with others to minimise the disruption. Working Together with Rail Users may help in some small way. As a successful campaigner myself, you need to get the majority of  rail users ‘on side’.I expect most of them are unhappy with Govia too.

There needs to be a lot more talk on alternatives, rather than the old and tired  Labouresque techniques that frequently do not work and create animosity. Not all Union members support Labour anyway and  have quite different  and often visionary views.  In fact, with Govia getting less money this week, perhaps this will make them even more keen to remove guards as  cost cutting exercise.

It is all a horrible mess and I am glad I generally travel by bicycle.