10% claim on salaries greater than £50 000!

Once more BBC Scotland hides the facts in an attempt to put the viewer on the side of the ASLEF members and against Scotrail who run the system on behalf of the Scottish Government. Why is there no reporting or discussion of their 10% claim and whether or not that is reasonable? Why is this context not offered?

ScotRail drivers typically earn more than £50,000 a year and a 2.2% pay increase was offered, with the opportunity to take part in a revenue share agreement, which would take the total package to 5%.


The total offer is 5% for a group earning well over the national average wage of £31 000.


8 thoughts on “10% claim on salaries greater than £50 000!

  1. It’s political and a deliberate attempt to totally disrupt Scotland’s newly nationalised trains.
    I thought it might take a few months for the British state to orchestrate disruption to Scotland’s rail system in order to portray the Scottish government as incompetent, (they are not) and the renationalised trains as a failure, but it’s taken them what, six weeks. Fast movers these BritNats and with summer almost upon us, tourism will also likely suffer. Win win for the enemies of Scotland the BritNat English HQ’d parties.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Now that ASLEF members have voted by an absolute majority for industrial action across all parts of the UK (except the Isle of Wight), BBC Scotland will have to decide if it adopts its kneejerk union bashing approach, in common with almost all of the rest of the media or continues to pretend to support RMT members against the Scottish Government,

    I always support trade unions in improving the pay and conditions of their members. In the current dire economic condition and with the most arrogantly corrupt government in my lifetime, we need for more industrial action across all sectors.

    Liked by 5 people

      1. RMT is an interesting one. Check out the list of train companies here https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-61573206 (you’ll have to scroll right down to the bottom) in which action is proposed. I can see no mention of Scotland at all, other than via Network Rail. Of course, THIS could be the reason https://www.scotrail.co.uk/about-scotrail/news/rmt-pay-deal-ends-threat-strike-action-cop26#:~:text=Following%20further%20discussion%20between%20ScotRail,backdated%20to%2001%20April%202021.
        I dont know enough about railways to know how this will play out – for instance who employs signaling staff, but it’s interesting it is portrayed in the press as Scotland in a UK strike, or just an RMT strike in Scotland, when it looks as if it’s RMT members everywhere but Scotland.
        As for the ASLEF guys, clearly workers on wages of 50k demanding 10% is not good PR, but from the pov of making a rail system work, wage conflict was something the SG inherited – see this from last year https://aslef.org.uk/news/scotrail-joint-unions-statement
        But as John Jamieson points out in his letter to the National https://www.thenational.scot/politics/20157483.bigger-pay-rise-rail-workers-require-cuts-elsewhere/ if the drivers succeed, it is money going out from the fixed SG budget which will mean cuts in other areas outwith the railways such as Scottish Child Payment.
        There is too, a certain amount of demonstrations of strength going on to show who is “in charge” – I think this gives us an insight https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/aslef-abellio-union-scottish-government-scotrail-b1974176.html
        There can be little doubt that just as RMT acted just in time for COP26, this is an ambush, but one the SG should have been aware was going to happen (the dispute, I think was ongoing, predating April 1st). The Government are trying to argue it will only be temporary as they are training up drivers so that rest day working is not necessary. However, I wonder if that is the point – I can remember when industrial peace in the Engineering industry was defined as “two nights and a Sunday” – ie overtime is a financial expectation. If rest day working is done away with, the drivers (well paid drivers) are going to take a financial hit (though have more times to themselves). Besides training a driver takes at least one year (when they are trained and can be allowed out isnt clear) and that process has been seriously disrupted by Covid. If the SG is hoping to ride this one out till then there are a lot of bad headlines (and yes misleading crap) to come. Could they do better? Out with the dug yesterday on walks that take us near to the north bank electric service and many of the trains passing us were pretty empty. I wonder if by tweaking their new timetable (eg less cuts at known high demand and more at lower demand) they might at least obviate the Jamie McIver interview outside Queen Street (did he just bump into that guy).
        Anyhow, I understand and share the frustration of the BBC lying to us (again) but it’s hardly new is it. Could this at least be addressed by better strategic thinking which should have started with the expectation that something like this was going to happen.

        Liked by 3 people


    Liked by 1 person

  4. Train drivers’ ‘changing their minds’ about undertaking overtime /rest day working seems to have been used as leverage in disputes with train operators for years.

    From the BBC News website (10 March 2011): ‘London Midland disruption feared as drivers refuse overtime’ – ‘Rail passengers face disruption on Sunday as a result of a dispute between London Midland and train drivers’ union Aslef. Drivers are refusing to work overtime, forcing the company to run a reduced and restricted special timetable.’

    BBC News website (17 May 2018): ‘Southern rail drivers announce new overtime ban’ – ‘Passengers’ brief respite from travel disruption on Southern railway is set to end at the end of this month as train drivers stage a new overtime ban. Members of the Aslef union will refuse to work overtime from the end of May, immediately after the latest one-day strike by members of the RMT union.’

    When such events happened in England in the past, the corporate media did not ‘empathise’ much with the union position. However, aspects of their coverage – if factually correct – did shine some light on how the railways were being run. Has much changed?

    From the Daily Mail, 31 July, 2018: ‘Last week Northern, West Midlands Railway and Arriva Trains Wales blamed cancellations on a shortage of drivers. ALL ALLOW DRIVERS TO WORK A FOUR-DAY WEEK WITH VOLUNTARY OVERTIME.’ (my emphasis)

    ‘Insiders say drivers like their extra earning power and unions can USE AN OVERTIME BAN AS LEVERAGE in negotiations with employers.’

    The coverage of course included a characteristic Tory response: ‘Last night a senior Tory source said: ‘Things like refusing to work Sundays or overtime at the last minute show that unions only have their own self-interest at heart – they don’t care about providing a good service or what’s best for passengers.’ Presumably that ‘Tory source’ is not a current Scottish Tory MSP/MP!

    The Mail article also gave a trade union view: ‘Mick Cash, RMT general secretary, said: ‘It suits the operators to run on a knife edge and be reliant on people working on their rest days. It is fraught with difficulty because it is not compulsory to work on your day off.’’

    And: ‘The rail industry is run on a wing and a prayer with an expectation that people will work overtime on their days off. The solution is very simple. We need more drivers.’ An Aslef spokesman added: ‘ON ANY GIVEN DAY TRAIN SERVICES ARE BEING RUN VOLUNTARILY.’

    From The Sun , 30 Jul 2018: ‘The drivers working for the majority of the biggest rail operators in Britain are ON A FOUR-DAY WEEK, working no more than 36 hours, allowing them to cash in on VAST AMOUNTS OF OVERTIME’ ‘Due to this bosses are forced to offer hundreds of pounds a day in overtime as an incentive to get people to work.’

    I’d like to repeat a bit of what I wrote btl here on 20 May. I came across this from 29 January 2021 on the occasion of another railway being taken into public ownership:

    Source: https://aslef.org.uk/news/northern-rail

    ‘Mick Whelan, general secretary of ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has responded to today’s announcement by Grant Shapps, the Secretary of State for Transport, that the Northern franchise is to be brought back into public ownership.

    ‘Mick said: ‘We welcome today’s decision, because we want the railway in public ownership, but let’s do it properly, with a clear, long-term, strategic vision, not just as a short-term response to the years of franchised failure.

    ‘THERE WON’T BE AN IMMEDIATE IMPROVEMENT because many of the systemic failures at Northern – the late delivery of new rolling stock, the cancellation by the Conservative government of infrastructure upgrades, TRYING TO RUN A SERVICE WITH TOO FEW DRIVERS – CANNOT BE REMEDIED OVERNIGHT.’

    Well perhaps not ‘overnight’, that would indeed be unrealistic! But it should be remedied within two months it seems, at least in Scotland – and the issue of driver shortages should be sorted within this timeframe even tho’ Aslef members decide within these same two months to decline the opportunity for overtime working?

    Based on the response of general secretary of ASLEF quoted above, does an SNP Scottish Government’s action on rail nationalisation merit less consideration, less patience than a Tory government’s?

    Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.