The impasse of the train strike is resolved as the RMT union agrees to the latest pay proposal.
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The train strike situation has been ongoing for the past six months, with rail workers participating in numerous walkouts. However, there is hope that the stalemate may finally come to an end. This is because a large majority of RMT union members have voted in favour of Network Rail's latest pay offer.
The voting saw a high turnout of almost 90%, with 15,754 members casting their votes. Out of these, 12,047 members were in favor of ceasing the strike that started nine months ago, making up a 76:24 majority.
The union has released a statement announcing that the trade dispute with Network Rail has come to a close following the decision of the RMT National Executive.
The agreement involves an increase in salary of 9.2 percent for the previous and current year, along with an additional boost for employees who earn less. Additionally, the deal offers an extension of reduced prices for rail travel.
In simpler terms, Mick Lynch, who is in charge of the RMT group, announced that the strike and the unwavering unity and perseverance of the members resulted in an improved offer with new funds. The offer was accepted by the members, and therefore, the disagreement is now resolved.
The leader of Network Rail, Andrew Haines, expressed his satisfaction with the result of the RMT member's vote. He stated that the positive outcome is beneficial for employees, commuters, and the nation.
Me and my crew will now shift our attention towards reconstructing our railway in order to improve our service for both passengers and freight clients.
The RMT is still at loggerheads with 14 train operators who have signed contracts with the Department for Transport (DfT).
Last month, the Rail Delivery Group (RDG), which speaks for train operators, proposed a final offer to the union. The offer was approved by ministers.
However, the RMT leadership declined the proposal after conducting a thorough discussion with its members.
The agreement was not subjected to a vote from the members, which is different from the proposal made by Network Rail.
According to Mr Lynch, the offer was "terrible."
Following a sizeable number of Network Rail employees agreeing to reach a settlement, Mark Harper, the transport secretary, highlighted that RMT members working for train operating firms are not afforded equal opportunities to resolve their dispute.
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This is due to the fact that the RMT has declined to allow the Rail Delivery Group's offer, which is quite similar, to be voted on, which has resulted in these employees being deprived of the compensation they are entitled to.
The most recent series of wide-scale strikes commenced on Thursday of the previous week, with planned protests for Thursday the 30th of March and Saturday the 1st of April.
According to Mr. Lynch, unless the government permits the train companies to present a satisfactory proposal, the planned strike on March 30 and April 1 will proceed. However, if a suitable offer is put forward by the train companies, the union would consider it and bring it to the attention of its members.
It is now up to the government to make a decision or take action on this matter.