RMT

Tube cleaners: a strike for freedom

Issue section: 

I was an activist from a young age. As a student in Nigeria I was secretary of the national students' organisation in my university. I had a political background - I lived with a political uncle and he was my inspiration.

When I came to England, and into the cleaning industry at London Underground (LU), the first thing I found was that the cleaners were predominantly black. That was a motivation, seeing what they were being subjected to. It reminded me of my background.

I got involved and felt I could be part of the struggle. I saw it as a set of people under slavery. It was not just about the money but their oppressive situation, and I felt there was a need for liberation.

Public transport: how to get back on track

Issue section: 
Issue: 
Author: 

Shareholders and accountancy firms are the biggest beneficiaries of the privatisation of public transport in Britain. Unjum Mirza, RMT rail union member and Left List candidate in the GLA elections, proposes a different vision of a publicly run, environmentally friendly and efficient system.

The market has failed. The Tory privatisation of the railways has been a disaster. The Hatfield derailment exposed the failure of Railtrack and the fundamental flaw in the "separate the wheel from steel" strategy - in which railway operations are split from infrastructure. More rail disasters, from Ladbroke Grove to Potters Bar, further illustrated that public services left to the dictates of the market cost lives.

Going Nowhere Fast

Issue section: 
Author: 

The rail unions have built up some powerful muscle they can flex.

When Stephen Byers was spotted in a Westminster canteen just before Xmas, deep in talks with Mick Rix of Aslef, eyebrows were raised all round. We were all under the impression that trade unions had been virtually airbrushed out of the frame. Now here was one apparently on the best of terms with the transport secretary. One interpretation might be that, with the railways in particular, the government has dug itself into such a hole that it needs every bit of help it can get to winch itself out again.

Labour and the Unions: We are Throwing Down the Gauntlet

Issue section: 
Author: 

RMT activist Greg Tucker explains how growing radicalisation is leading to a rift between New Labour and the unions.

The RMT leadership was always proud of the deep links between Labour and the union at all levels. At the top the RMT sponsored half the shadow cabinet and had great expectations of a Labour government. A significant number of union activists had been encouraged to become Labour councillors and at the grassroots the union boasted the highest density of party membership of any trade union.

Subscribe to RSS - RMT