UK trains disrupted again as workers stage fresh strikes

Jan 2, 2023, 1:39 PM | Updated: Jan 3, 2023, 4:58 am
A passenger walks at Euston station during a strike by members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport ...

A passenger walks at Euston station during a strike by members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT), in a long-running dispute over jobs and pensions, in London, Tuesday Jan. 3, 2023. (Stefan Rousseau/PA via AP)

(Stefan Rousseau/PA via AP)

              Mick Lynch, general secretary of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) joins members on the picket line outside London Euston train station, Tuesday Jan. 3, 2023, following a strike by members of the RMT, in a long-running dispute over jobs and pensions.  (Stefan Rousseau/PA via AP)
            
              A Southeastern High Speed train leaves Ashford station under a reduced timetable during a strike by members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT), in a long-running dispute over jobs and pensions, in Ashford, Tuesday Jan. 3, 2023. (Gareth Fuller/PA via AP)
            
              Travellers stand at Waterloo station during a strike by members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT), in a long-running dispute over jobs and pensions, in London, Tuesday Jan. 3, 2023. (Jonathan Brady/PA via AP)
            
              A passenger walks at Euston station during a strike by members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT), in a long-running dispute over jobs and pensions, in London, Tuesday Jan. 3, 2023. (Stefan Rousseau/PA via AP)

LONDON (AP) — Commuters returning to work on Tuesday after the Christmas break were advised not to travel as tens of thousands of British rail workers stage a fresh round of strikes that will disrupt services all week.

Around half of the U.K.’s railway lines are closed, and only one-fifth of services are running amid a long-running dispute over pay and working conditions.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport union were striking Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, while drivers in the Aslef union will strike Thursday. Many places, including most of Scotland and Wales, have no train services.

Transport Secretary Mark Harper urged union leaders to come to the negotiating table and said the government has offered a “very fair pay offer.” But union boss Mick Lynch said officials have not put forward any fresh proposals and suggested the government was blocking an agreement.

“What we keep hearing is the same stuff from the government across the sectors that they want to facilitate an agreement, but they don’t actually do anything,” Lynch told Sky News from a picket line at London’s Euston train station.

Train companies and the government argue they need to change the way the rail network operates to control costs after the coronavirus pandemic reduced passenger traffic and changed commuting patterns.

But rail workers, like others who work in the public sector, say wages have failed to keep pace with the skyrocketing cost of living. Inflation in the U.K. has soared to a 41-year high of 11.1%, driven by sharply rising energy and food costs.

Nurses, airport baggage handlers, ambulance and bus drivers and postal workers were among those who walked off their jobs in December to demand higher pay.

Ambulance staff are set to strike again on Jan. 11 and 23, while nurses will do the same Jan. 18-19.

Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, which represents National Health Service organizations, urged the government to reopen talks with unions over pay. He said the last thing hospitals needed was four days of strikes in January as they grappled with too few staff and high demand exacerbated by more flu and COVID-19 cases.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Turkey’s opposition vows more democracy if it wins election

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — A coalition of six Turkish opposition parties striving to end two decades of rule by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday reaffirmed a commitment for a return to parliamentary democracy should their alliance win elections that are likely to be held on May 14. In a ceremony in Ankara, the six […]
1 day ago
South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol, right, shakes hands with NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenb...
Associated Press

NATO chief urges Seoul to send military support to Ukraine

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg on Monday called for South Korea to provide direct military support to Ukraine, saying Kyiv is in urgent need of weapons to fight off the prolonged Russian invasion. South Korea, a growing arms exporter with the large U.S.-backed military, has provided humanitarian aid and other support […]
1 day ago
FILE-- In this Wednesday, Sept. 12, 2018 photo Hans-Georg Maassen, then head of the German Federal ...
Associated Press

German opposition party seeks to oust ex-intel agency chief

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s main opposition party is trying to get a rid of a member and former head of the country’s domestic intelligence agency after he complained about what he said was a move toward “eliminatory racism against whites.” The leadership of the center-right Christian Democratic Union unanimously approved a resolution on Monday calling […]
1 day ago
The painting "A Boating Party" by French painter Gustave Caillebotte is displayed at the Orsay Muse...
Associated Press

France buys new masterpiece for Orsay museum with LVMH gift

PARIS (AP) — France has acquired a stunning Impressionist masterpiece for its national collection of art treasures, with a donation from luxury goods giant LVMH paying the 43 million euros (nearly $47 million) for “A Boating Party” by 19th-century French artist Gustave Caillebotte. The oil on canvas shows an oarsman in a top hat rowing […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Austrian police find family illegally living in wine cellar

BERLIN (AP) — Austrian police said Monday they arrested a 54-year-old man after he attacked two social workers with pepper spray when they found him living illegally in a private wine cellar in northeastern Austria with a woman and six young children. Police in the Austrian province of Lower Austria were still trying to determine […]
1 day ago
FILE - Signs stand outside Richneck Elementary School in Newport News, Va., on Jan. 25, 2023. The s...
Associated Press

School where 6-year-old shot his teacher set to reopen

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (AP) — Stepped-up security and a new school administrator will be present as students return to the Virginia elementary school where a 6-year-old boy shot his teacher weeks ago. Richneck Elementary School in Newport News was set to reopen Monday, more than three weeks after the Jan. 6 shooting. Police have said […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
UK trains disrupted again as workers stage fresh strikes