CrossCountry Trains workers to stage 24-hour strike

Rail workers at CrossCountry Trains will stage a 24-hour strike after a "comprehensive breakdown" in industrial relations, union bosses announced.

Members of the Rail Maritime and Transport (RMT) union will walk out on 21 December.

Train managers, senior conductors and on-board catering staff will be involved in the action.

The company, which covers routes from Penzance to Aberdeen, called the industrial action "regrettable".

'Unnecessary worry'

CrossCountry's managing director Andy Cooper said: "We had asked the RMT not to take any action until we had exhausted our discussions.

"We had already reached agreement with the union over the majority of the concerns they raised and have a further meeting next week, where we are confident that we can resolve the remaining issues.

"It is regrettable that the RMT has made this announcement and caused unnecessary worry for customers while we are still working to resolve the remaining few issues."

The union had raised issues including the use of league tables to record performance, and rosters and training.

RMT general secretary Bob Crow said: "As a result of the total collapse of industrial relations across a whole raft of matters, we are in dispute with CrossCountry and the union has had no option but to ballot members for action and with a mandate secured we are pushing on with a 24-hour strike.

"RMT will not sit back while procedures are used to harass and dismiss members, important changes are imposed rather than negotiated and technological and operational changes are not recognised and rewarded.

"We will continue to apply pressure on the company until all of the issues are resolved to our satisfaction."

The CrossCountry service radiates out of Birmingham and covers much of England, major points in Scotland up to Aberdeen and Cardiff.

The company is not advising customers to change any of their travel arrangements on 21 December.

The RMT has also called two pre-Christmas strikes at ScotRail in a dispute over the sacking of a union member.

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