Train drivers in the UK have launched several labor strikes across the country over the rising cost of living at a time when they are causing transport disruptions this holiday season.
The ‘Enough is Enough’ movement began a series of rallies involving London’s railways, the Underground, and the capital’s buses. This union-led group has indicated that it collected 300,000 signatures of support in three days.
“Ya Basta” has five main demands: higher wages in real terms for workers, lower energy bills, an end to food poverty, more affordable housing and higher taxes for the highest earners, according to Bloomberg.
Rising costs and expectations of very high winter energy bills are causing what some are calling a summer of discontent in the UK. In addition to training conductors, workers from postal workers to lawyers are already planning to strike.
Rail companies have warned passengers of “very limited service” and trains that are more crowded than usual.
This Saturday, Labor politicians in the Northeast backed a rail strike at Newcastle Central Station. North Tyne Mayor Jimmy Driscoll told Chronicle Live that morale is good and the public is showing support for workers. “This general support is because people, in general, are going through the same thing: By the end of the month, everyone knows it’s getting harder and harder to pay their bills.”
Thus, Driscoll explained, “These drivers haven’t had a salary increase in three years or a salary agreement in five years.” “Everyone knew this was coming,” he said. “We’ve all said it.”
In addition, some UK operators have indicated that they will have to operate at lower speeds due to the high track temperatures caused by the current heat wave.