Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Rail Strike Threat over Job Losses

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Rail Strike Threat over Job Losses

Article excerpt

Byline: By Steven Oliver

A trade union leader has warned Network Rail that it faces strike action when it announces 2,000 job losses today as part of a plan to cut costs.

Network Rail, which took over from Railtrack, plans to make the cuts to its 14,000-strong workforce over the next three years.

The not-for-profit company was also publishing an efficiency plan outlining savings and cuts in spending over the next decade.

The job cuts will plunge the firm into fresh controversy following a row last week over executive pay. Unions and passenger groups were angry when it was revealed that directors received bonus payments totalling pounds 1.8 million last year, even though trains were still running late.

The Northern regional officer of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union, Stan Herschel, said: "Cutting jobs like this is an absolutely scandalous idea.

"It will have a serious knock-on effect in the North East and as a union we are prepared to defend our members' interests to the hilt, even if it means industrial action. …

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