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London Underground engineers to strike in pension row

London Underground engineers will stage a 24-hour walkout at 6am on Friday, after a satisfactory conclusion failed to be reached between Transport for London (TfL) and The Rail Maritime and Transport union (RMT) in a dispute over pensions and benefits.

The Tube Lines workers, who maintain and upgrade Northern, Jubilee and Piccadilly lines, argued that they were left on worse pension deals compared to other TfL staff, after the former public-private contractor was taken over by TfL.

RMT argues that Tube Lines employees should be able to join TfL's pension scheme and receive travel concessions.

“RMT members have delivered a massive mandate and rock-solid action following a straightforward demand for parity with other Tube staff on pensions and passes,” said Bob Crow, RMT general secretary.

“This dispute is about justice and about ensuring that all groups of staff under the umbrella of London Underground receive the same rights and benefits and our members have no choice but to strike again in the fight to secure those basic rights.”

Workers staged the last 24-hour strike over the issue on 1 November, causing weekend engineering work on the Northern Line to be postponed.

Explaining why the Tubes Lines workers are taking a fresh wave of industrial action, Mr Crow added: “We have gone through all the negotiating channels but Tube Lines continue to refuse to budge and have also refused to engage in meaningful talks.

“It is that pig-headed approach has raised the temperature on the shop floor and has resulted in this latest phase of strike action later this week.”

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