London Mayor Sadiq Khan has announced that he will extend staff free travel to all sub-contracted cleaners who work on London’s transport system following years of campaigning by RMT.
In September last year, Sadiq Khan announced that Tube cleaners would get free travel, like other TfL employees. RMT pressed the Mayor to extend this more generally to employees of sub-contractors. The Mayor’s announcement extends free travel to sub-contacted cleaners but not yet to others like security guards.
The union had already won free travel for around 5,000 sub-contracted cleaners at TfL.
And now 800 more cleaners, including those working at MTR Crossrail and on London Overground will have the same right.
At a fringe meeting during London Labour conference, the union made the case for the Mayor to do more for TfL’s cleaners, including extending the free travel benefit, improving other employment conditions and ending the scourge of outsourcing by bringing them into direct employment.
Responding to the announcement by the Mayor on Thursday 2nd February, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said:
“This is another step in the right direction by the Mayor of London and we’re calling on him to extend it to all TfL sub-contracted workers.
Sadiq Khan’s welcome action stands in stark contrast to the Tories who earlier in the week forced legislation through the House of Commons that would remove these workers’ right to strike.
Instead of attacking cleaners, the Tories should be following the Mayor’s lead and ensuring all rail cleaners have free travel.
However, the Mayor needs to do more too. Labour nationally has committed to oversee the biggest wave of insourcing of public services for a generation when it’s elected. London’s Mayor is already in power, so we’ll be stepping up our campaign for Sadiq to tackle the scourge of outsourcing in TfL, starting by bringing London’s Underground cleaners in-house.”