Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Union Condemns ‘Amateurish’ Approach to Public Safety

Rail & Maritime Transport Union 21st November 2017

Rail Union Condemns Auckland Transport’s ‘Amateurish’ Approach to Public Safety

The Rail and Maritime Transport Union (RMTU), which represents Locomotive Engineers and on-board crews on Auckland’s passenger trains, today slammed Auckland Transport for its ill-conceived staffing plans for Auckland’s rail network.

‘’We met with representatives of Auckland Transport at their request yesterday to discuss the introduction of so-called ‘Transport Officers’ on the railway and we were appalled at their amateurish approach” said RMTU Organiser John Kerr.

“Auckland Transport (AT) and French owned multi-national Transdev, who operate our passenger trains in Auckland and Wellington, want to move to driver only operation (DDO), getting rid of permanent on-board crews. This requires three things to happen: New Zealand Transport Authority (NZTA) approval for driver door operation; KiwiRail to grant access to the network for this type of operation; and thirdly, the agreement of our members,’ he said.

“Yesterday AT confirmed that Transdev haven’t even submitted their application to have driver only operated doors, and that they have no real idea how and where Transport Officers, who they say will staff the network in the absence of on-board train staff, will operate” he said.

“They say they will deploy 125 Transport Officers by mid-2019, yet they said they ‘do not see these people as an operational part of the railway’,” he said.

“AT are saying Transport Officers will not be required to meet the same medical standard as current train crews and confirmed that there is no guarantee a Transport Officer will be on any given train at any given time. They do not appear to have worked out when to deploy these Officers to ensure the security of the travelling public and responded time and time again to our questions with the comment ‘that’s just detail’,” he said.

“What these bureaucrats have worked out is a shabby little deal whereby any of our current on-board members who take up a job as a Transport Officer, on inferior pay and conditions to those they currently enjoy, will have to agree to forgo their full redundancy entitlement and take a so-called gratuity that is coincidentally half of what they would have otherwise been paid out,’’ he said.

“AT yesterday confirmed that it underwrites Transdev’s redundancy liabilities, thereby allowing a foreign multi-national to run what is effectively a labour hire company on Auckland’s railway creaming off a profit from taxpayers, ratepayers and the travelling public. A classic case of the socialisation of loss and the privatisation of profit,’’ he said.

‘’The security and safety implications of getting rid of permanent on-board crews are serious. It threatens to turn the railway into a criminal’s paradise. Uniformed staff deter criminal and anti-social behaviour and it’s vital they are on every train. It adds insult to injury that a publically funded body like AT are colluding with Transdev to both rip off Kiwi workers and endanger the travelling public ’’ he said.

“Our members are currently voting on industrial action to get Transdev and AT to stop this half-baked scheme to get rid of the very people who make such a big contribution to keeping passengers safe. Tomorrow we’re holding a stop-work meeting to discuss this further. We don’t want to inconvenience the public but our members won’t compromise on safety. No trains will be cancelled during the meeting but unless we sort this out there is a strong likelihood of stoppages very soon,” he said.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Another Reason To Loathe HR Departments (And On The Teachers Strike)

This morning’s news item about Police emergency call centre staff turning up for work while they’re sick – because they’re afraid their sick leave statistics will be used against them, and their jobs put in jeopardy – is not an isolated case...

Obviously, sick people shouldn’t be being treated by doctors and nurses who are themselves sick and potentially infectious. Similarly, Police emergency calls also need to be fielded by people who’re feeling alert, and on top of their game. More>>

 
 

MPs' Computers To Be Searched: Inquiry Into Leak On Simon Bridges' Expenses

An inquiry has been launched to find out who leaked the National Party's expenses to the media... Parliament's speaker, Trevor Mallard, said a Queen's Counsel would lead the inquiry with the help of an employment lawyer and also someone with forensic IT skills. More>>

ALSO:

Teachers Strike: Nationwide Rallies And Marches

Teachers and principals voted for a full day strike to be held on 15 August to send a strong message to the Government that the current collective agreement offers from the Ministry of Education would not fix the crisis in teaching. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: City Council Ends Its Support For Jackson’s Movie Museum

The Wellington City Council and the Movie Museum Limited have today announced a mutually-agreed parting of the ways for a joint project between the Council’s Convention Centre and TMML’s Movie Museum... Both parties remain optimistic for the future of their respective projects. More>>

Pay Equity: Historic Settlement For Education Support Workers

The New Zealand Educational Institute (NZEI) and the Ministry of Education today signed Terms of Settlement to address a pay equity claim for 329 support workers who work with very young children in early childhood and primary schools. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Stereotypes About Jacinda Ardern

Routinely, female politicians get depicted as either show ponies or battle axes, with little room for anything else in between. .. More>>

Weekend Interviews: "Discriminatory And Racist" Aussie Deportations

The former president of Australia’s Human Rights Commission Gillian Triggs says deportations have risen dramatically in Australia since 2014 when ministers and ministerial delegates were given the power to cancel visas - and half of those being deported are New Zealanders. "These are massive numbers, actually escalating dramatically."... More>>

ALSO:

Legal Challenge: Prisoner Has 9 Boxes Of Documents Seized

Human rights organisation People Against Prisons Aotearoa says a prisoner they advocate for has had 9 boxes of legal documents seized from him just days before his case against the Department of Corrections was to be heard. More>>

Single-Use Plastic Bags: Govt To Phase Them Out

Single-use plastic shopping bags will be phased out over the next year, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Associate Environment Minister Eugenie Sage announced today. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages