Train drivers’ union to recommend pay offers to members in Wales and Scotland

The train drivers’ union has revealed it has received “significant” pay offers for its members in Wales and Scotland, in “stark contrast” to the response from the Conservative government in Westminster.

Aslef said it was recommending acceptance of offers from ScotRail and Transport for Wales (TfW) to its members.

A four-year TfW offer is for 8.9%, backdated to April 1, taking drivers to £63,200, with another 7.9% in April 2024, taking drivers to £68,300, Aslef said.

The one-year ScotRail offer is for 5%, taking drivers from £55,264 to £58,027.

Mick Whelan, Aslef’s general secretary, said: “Subject to the decision of our members – and because, as a trade union, we are a very democratic organisation, it is their decision – we have successfully negotiated significant pay increases for our members with the governments of the devolved nations.

“Sadly, this is in stark contrast with the response from the Westminster government. The 15 train companies with which we are in dispute – because they have not offered their drivers, our members, an increase in salary since 2019 – and the Tory government that stands behind them do not appear to be interested in getting a resolution that serves passengers and businesses as well as staff and will help to get Britain’s railways back on track.

“The latest deal with ScotRail is a further increase in salary and improvement in conditions – and the fourth increase since our members at those 15 train operating companies (TOC) represented by the Rail Delivery Group (RDG) and controlled by the Department for Transport (DfT) have had a rise.

“This is further proof that Aslef is willing to negotiate in good faith and modernise our railway and further proof that the failure of negotiations with the TOCs in England is the responsibility of Transport Secretary Mark Harper, the DfT, and the RDG. That has been laid bare for all to see.”

Aslef has staged a series of strikes in England and its members will walk out again later this month and on the day of the FA Cup Final in June.

David Simpson, ScotRail service delivery director, said: “I’m pleased that the Aslef executive committee has approved this strong pay offer and has recommended that its members vote to accept it.

“After several weeks of constructive negotiations, it’s really positive that drivers will be given a say and that Aslef is recommending that colleagues accept the offer.

“We believe that the pay offer is a strong one – while we have seen welcome growth in fare box revenue as more people choose rail, we remain in a challenging financial position.

“It’s one that is both fair to staff and would deliver value to the taxpayer, and we are encouraging our driver colleagues to accept.”

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