Ministerial comment on resolution in Network Rail dispute

Commenting on the resolution in the Network Rail dispute, Minister for Transport Jenny Gilruth said:

“We welcome the resolution of this dispute, which will come as a real relief to passengers in Scotland. Of course, it will also be a huge relief for Network Rail RMT members, who’ve waited over three years for a pay rise.

“In Scotland, we have maintained constructive discussions between ScotRail and the Scottish representatives of the RMT members. By doing so, we have settled our pay negotiations. We cannot ignore the knock on impacts of this dispute in Scotland, leading to 19 days of strikes, but I welcome that the Secretary of State for Transport has recognised the need for a different approach and worked with the Trade Unions to secure a railway that benefits users, staff and taxpayers.

“Scotland has embraced the concept of fair work, so it is disheartening to see our own progressive activity in this regard being put at risk by the inevitable wider consequences of the UK Government’s ill thought out, hasty and hostile approach to industrial relations. It again underlines the need for rail infrastructure to be devolved back to Scotland.

“We do not welcome UK Government plans for so-called radical rail reform agenda which have yet to be explained to Scottish Ministers in any detail, but which appear to be a guise for compulsory redundancies in the Network Rail workforce, including in Scotland.

“The Scottish Government remains committed to our long-standing policy of no compulsory redundancies. We will continue to work collaboratively with the Trade Unions in Scotland to make a publicly controlled ScotRail a success”.

Published 20 Mar 2023