Private talks between the RMT and London Underground (LU) management have so far failed to find a resolution before the union's station staff members strike for 48 hours starting on 6 February at 9pm (2100hrs). The union is planning to protest over the Fit for Future Stations programme, which has seen booking offices across the network shut down.
Transport for London (TfL) has argued that the modernisation scheme has improved customer satisfaction on the Underground. But the RMT wants changes around weekend work rosters and concessions on other issues.
Mick Cash, the general secretary of the union, told his members: "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."
The LU has warned that there may be some disruption on the network and has issued travel advice ahead of the planned strike. Services on London Overground, the bus network, tram, river and TfL Rail services will run normally, but they may be much busier than usual.
Steve Griffiths, LU's chief operating officer, said: "Our customers are advised to check the TfL website for the latest information as we try to keep London moving should the RMT proceed with its strike action."
He added: "All of our ticket offices closed in December and all this strike will achieve is to lose staff two days' pay and a £500 ($729) bonus. We have delivered every commitment we made to our staff over our stations modernisation programme – there have been no compulsory redundancies, work life balance has been protected and there's a job for anyone who wants to stay with no loss of pay.
"Around 900 station staff will be promoted or will move from fixed-term contracts to permanent roles, so there is clearly absolutely no basis whatsoever for this strike threat."
Travel advice to customers from TfL
The strike involves Tube station staff, which would affect services as follows:
- Saturday 6 February: Strike begins at 9pm (2100hrs) some stations may close earlier than usual. Please allow more time and complete your Tube journey
- Sunday 7 February: some stations may not open, and some stations may open later and close earlier than usual
- Monday 8 February: some stations may not open, and some stations may open later and close earlier than usual. Strike due to en at 9pm (2100hrs)
- Normal services on Tuesday 9 February, but customers should check before they travel
Should the strike action go ahead, LU expects that services will be disrupted from early evening on Saturday – customers are advised to complete their journeys earlier than usual and to check before they travel. All other public transport services and roads will be much busier than usual.