London commuters and tourists may have to contend with travel disruption on the weekend starting 6 February as members from the RMT stage a strike over job cuts. The union has requested station staff to walkout for 48 hours between 9pm GMT on 6 February and 8.59pm on 8 February.
"I urge you all to stand firm together and support the action to make sure our message is heard loud and clear by London Underground and also the travelling public, where it is already demonstrated that the majority of the public want stations staffed properly and ticket offices to remain open," said Mick Cash, the RMT's general secretary.
The union is protesting over Transport for London's Fit for the Future Stations programme, which has closed ticket offices down across the network. The RMT wants, among other things, "no imposed rosters, not short notice duty changes on cover weeks and no imposed new framework agreement".
But Steve Griffiths, the chief operating officer of London Underground, claimed the changes have improved customer satisfaction on the network. "Ticket offices that customers were using in ever dwindling numbers have already closed with more staff than ever now moved into ticket halls, gate lines and platforms where they can help customers more effectively," he said.
"As a result, we are seeing big increases in customer satisfaction, particularly in the helpfulness of staff. The only thing a strike will do is badly hit hard-working Londoners and lose staff two days' pay and a £500 ($714) bonus."
The RMT, along with the TSSA, Unite and Aslef, is also in dispute with LU over the proposed Night Tube. The union recently suspended its planned strike action over pay and work conditions relating to the service after progress was made at mitigation service Acas between the parties.