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Keir Starmer accuses government of ‘pouring petrol on fire’ of rail dispute

Keir Starmer accuses government of ‘pouring petrol on fire’ of rail dispute
‘They want the country to grind to a halt so they can feed off the division,’ Labour leader will say

お客様 キールスターマー 告発しました ボリス・ジョンソン and the transport secretary グラントシャップス of “stoking divisions” over nationwide rail strikes set to take place this week.

ザ・ 労働 leader will accuse the government of “pouring petrol on the fire” over its handling of the dispute with unions, instead of attempting to take the heat out of the row.

His remarks come after the Rail, Maritime and Transport union (RMT) confirmed on Saturday the strike action would go ahead after the failure of talks to resolve a bitter dispute over workers’ conditions.

Union members at Network Rail and 13 train operators will stage 24-hour walkouts on 21, 23 そして 25 六月, with disruption also possible for the rest of the week. There will also be industrial action on London Underground services on 21 六月.

週末に, the chief executive of the industry group UKHospitality, Kate Nicholls, suggested the tourism, leisure and theatre industries were “looking at an economic hit of over a billion pounds”.

In a speech to the Labour Local Government Association conference, Sir Keir will claim the prime minister and Mr Shapps “want the strikes to go ahead”, 追加する: “They want the country to grind to a halt so they can feed off the division.”

Referencing adverts posted by the Conservatives labelling the industrial action “Labour’s strikes”, Sir Keir will say: “Instead of spending their time this week around the negotiating table, they are designing attack ads.

“Instead of grown-up conversations to take the heat out of the situation, they are pouring petrol on the fire. Instead of bringing people together in the national interest, they are stoking division in their political interest.”

He will add: “Businesses will struggle with freight. School exams will be hard to get to. Hospital appointments [になります] 逃した. That’s why I’ve said the strikes should not go ahead.”

Network Rail bosses were set to hold last-ditch talks with the RMT on Sunday in the hope of averting the strike, but union bosses indicated there was little prospect of a breakthrough.

Confirming the strike action would go ahead, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said on Saturday: “Despite the best efforts of our negotiators, no viable settlements to the disputes have been created.”

彼が追加した: “It has to be restated that the source of these disputes is the decision by the Tory government to cut £4bn of funding from our transport systems – £2bn from national rail and £2bn from Transport for London.

“As a result of this transport austerity imposed by the government, the employing companies have taken decisions to savage the Railways Pension Scheme and the Transport for London scheme, cutting benefits, making staff work longer and poorer in retirement, while paying increased contributions.”

Ahead of the strikes, Mr Shapps issued a statement saying the government had repeatedly urged the RMT not to press ahead with the strike action, which will “cause misery” for the public.

彼が追加した: “Many people who do not get paid if they can’t get to work face losing money at a time they simply can’t afford to. Children sitting exams will face the extra distraction of changing their travel plans. And vulnerable people trying to attend long-awaited hospital appointments may have no choice but to cancel.

“By carrying out this action, the RMT is punishing millions of innocent people, instead of calmly discussing the sensible and necessary reforms we need to make in order to protect our rail network.”

Business secretary Kwasi Kwarteng accused unions of “bribing” workers to go on strike after some increased hardship payments for staff who will lose pay by walking out.

He was quoted in the サンデーテレグラフ 言っているように: “It’s obvious that trade union chiefs have been quietly amassing a war chest to effectively bribe workers into unleashing a summer of strike chaos.”