Metro staff vote to strike over disputes

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METRO staff have voted overwhelmingly to strike.

The RMT union ran separate ballots in disputes over pay for cleaners and operational staff on the Tyne and Wear Metro, and alleged victimisation of a cleaner working for contractor Churchills.

The union says it acted after talks with DB Regio, which operates the Metro system for owner Nexus, failed to produce a “realistic” offer on pay and conditions.

General Secretary Bob Crow said: “In the face of the insulting zero pay offer from the company, we have had no option but to ballot for action in the battle to eliminate poverty pay and to improve our member’s standard of living.

“Our members have now voted 100 per cent to strike in a magnificent show of unity and determination.

“This fight is about securing pay justice for the cleaners on Tyne and Wear Metro. It’s as simple as that.”

Richard McClean, managing director of DB Regio Tyne and Wear, said: “We are very disappointed that the RMT and Aslef members have voted in favour of industrial action.

“If the RMT and Aslef would like to delay calling any action until further talks have been held, we would very much welcome that.”

Churchills declined to comment.