Circular No: IR/012/17
TO ALL BRANCHES, REGIONAL OFFICES & REGIONAL COUNCILS
Our Ref: BR2/14/1
12th January 2017
TRAIN DESPATCH OF SOUTHERN (GTR) DOO SERVICES – SOUTH WEST TRAINS
I write with regards to the above matter and in relation to the recent announcement made by Southern (GTR) to extend Driver Only Operation between Portsmouth Harbour and Havant. This decision has been made without any negotiations taking place with the RMT.
The RMT is now in receipt of copies of special notices issued to staff by Southern advising of their intentions to run Driver Only Operation – Passenger (DOO-P) services claiming that ‘these changes have been introduced in line with our franchise to modernise and improve the quality of our customer service on board trains and improve our overall performance’.
The special briefing issued to staff from South West Trains indicates that ‘the introduction of these services will mean that dispatch duties previously carried out by Guards and/or Station Staff will now be completed by the Driver.’
The extension of DOO will have a major impact on our South West Trains Station staff, Guard and Driver members. The RMT has serious reservations over the safety aspects for the travelling public and grave concerns over the implications to the changes of job roles and working practices this will bring and we will not agree to any extensions of DOO.
Therefore, the matter has been subject to recent consideration by the union’s National Executive Committee who notes that South West Trains has not carried out any consultations with the RMT regarding this matter. Therefore, I have written to the company challenging their decision and I am seeking assurances from South West Trains on the following:
• That no member of staff will be disciplined or placed on any support process if a PTI incident occurs whilst on any platform involving any Southern (GTR) DOO service.
• That the establishment levels at affected locations will remain the same/above the levels as before these services were introduced on the South West Trains network.
• That no South West Trains staff will be dispatching Southern (GTR) DOO services.
• If Southern staff are used on any South West Trains stations to dispatch Southern services what training and facilities has been provided.
Following on from the above, this matter will be placed on the agenda for further discussion at the next available South West Trains Joint Safety Committee and I will, of course, keep you fully advised on any further developments. In the meantime, I would be most grateful if Branches and Regional Councils could report back all incidents involving these trains to the RMT at firstname.lastname@example.org