ASLEF ScotRail drivers back new pay deal to avoid repeat of strikes

Drivers will receive a 5% uplift backdated to April in addition to a further increase later this year.

ASLEF ScotRail drivers accept new pay deal for 2023/24 to avoid repeat of last year’s strikes iStock

ASLEF train drivers have agreed a new pay deal with ScotRail to avert a repeat of strikes that brought parts of the network to a standstill last summer.

Workers represented by the union will receive a 5% pay increase to their basic rate, backdated to April 1 this year, and a further 1% rise from October 1 as part of the agreement.

Members of the union were among thousands to walk off platforms last year in a wide-ranging dispute with transport firms – including Scottish Government-owned ScotRail – and Network Rail in a dispute over pay and conditions.

The Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union and the GMB also undertook action, slashing services on some of Scotland’s busiest routes.

However, the ScotRail strand of those strikes ended in July when drivers accepted a 5% uplift and further disruption looks to have been avoided after the recommended deal was backed by members.

The union’s Scottish organiser, Kevin Lindsay, called on the UK Government to offer a similar deal amid a dispute south of the border.

He said: “This is a resounding vote in favour of accepting the improved pay offer and it shows the importance of a positive approach to industrial relations.

“It is now high time that the Rail Delivery Group and the Tory Government do the same in England and negotiate respectfully and with a willingness to pay our members what they need and deserve.”

Over 75% of ASLEF members voted to accept the pay offer, with a 81% turnout.

David Simpson, ScotRail service delivery director, said: “This is fantastic news for our staff and customers. Acceptance of the deal helps us to deliver more certainty on Scotland’s railway for the weeks and months ahead, as we continue to encourage more passengers back to use the railway.

“The focus of everyone at ScotRail is on delivering a safe, reliable, and green service for our customers.

“We are grateful to our trade union colleagues for their constructive approach to negotiations, which has resulted in a well-deserved pay increase for our staff, while delivering value for the taxpayer in the challenging financial environment in which the railway operates.”

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