Northern has responded to the RMT after the union expressed its intention to ballot Northern conductors who are members of the RMT.
A spokesman said: “We are in the early stages of developing our modernisation plans to bring customers a better railway, so we believe the RMT is extremely premature in calling a ballot for strikes.
“During our discussions this week we offered commitments to consult fully with our people, customers and key stakeholders. We want to protect jobs and pay as we work together to provide safe, secure and accessible services for our customers.
“We want to continue talking with the RMT.”
The Railway Times Editorial:
The major news outlets are likening this to the Southern fiasco. You can bet a months wages that the RMT have seen the modernisation plans and that they involve safety risks and job cuts.
These cuts are likely to materialise as ‘Driver Only Trains’, doing away with the Conductor. A cost cutting move but a major increase in safety risk.
Conductors on trains are there for the publics safety not just as a revenue collector.
The RMT is right to ballot its members early if only to show Northern that risks to the travelling public will not be tolerated by the very staff who protect them.