ScotRail staff to strike during COP26

ScotRail engineers will strike during COP26, which will be held in Glasgow next month.

ScotRail workers have voted to take part in a fresh series of strikes that coincide with the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow this November.

What’s happened: Unite has announced a series of 24-hour stoppages will take place in the coming weeks.

These are scheduled for October 18-19, November 1-2, 10-11, and 12-13 - the latter three coinciding with the COP26 climate summit.

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Why are staff striking: The union blamed the ‘reckless’ actions of ScotRail management and said it had failed to make a ‘meaningful’ pay offer.

What will be affected: A number of rail depots, workplaces and outstations will be impacted by the strike action. This includes Bathgate Depot, Corkerhill (Glasgow) Depot, Dalmuir, Glasgow Central, Glasgow Queen Street, Edinburgh Haymarket Depot, Edinburgh Waverley, Inverness Depot, Motherwell, Perth, Shields (Glasgow) Depot, and Yoker Depot. The strike action will commence at different times on the aforementioned dates at the various locations.

How many voted for strikes: Unite’s engineering members at Abellio Scotrail voted by 78 per cent in support of strike action in a 68.4 per cent ballot turnout. 92 per cent supported taking industrial action short of a strike.

What does Unite say: Pat McIlvogue, Unite industrial officer, said: “Unite has been left with no choice but to resolutely respond to the reckless behaviour displayed by Abellio Scotrail management. While discussions have continued these talks have produced absolutely nothing. There has been no pay offer and no movement by the company. The talks have been spun out and cynically used as a delaying tactic to avoid the national embarrassment of having strike action during the COP26 climate change conference which is being held in Glasgow. Well, these tactics have spectacularly backfired because our engineering members will now hold several 24 hour stoppages in the coming weeks.

“We want the Scottish public to know that we have exhausted the process. Unite’s members have been holding action short of strike in an attempt to get Abellio Scotrail to wake up, and to recognise the storm that they have created to no effect. Now strike action will severely disrupt events and the COP26 climate change conference due to this shambolic company. The Scottish Government and Transport Scotland must urgently intervene because the Abellio Scotrail management clearly lack the ability, humility and intelligence to live up to their responsibilities with respect to the workforce, and the Scottish public.”