Over the past year there has been a large amount of unrest among civil workers, many of which have faced redundancies and pay cuts forced by the economy. As governments look for a way to cut back on expenses and decrease their deficits, the cuts often come at the expense of civil workers. Recently train drivers from Southern Railways became the latest group to threaten walk outs if their demands are not met. Leaders for the union said that they are planning a walk out on December 28 if their demands are not met regarding holiday pay. Although the union says that they have legitimate reasons for the strike, Southern Railways claims that the union has not negotiated and has chosen to strike over other less disruptive types of negotiation.
The Associated Society of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen claim that Southern Railways has refused to pay drivers extra to work over the holidays. This is why the group has threatened a walkout on December 28, which is likely to be one of the busiest travel days of the year. The walkout would cause a massive disruption to one of the busiest train routes in the United Kingdom. The service goes from London all the way to the South Coast, as well as other places in the South East, making it one of the most used networks in the United Kingdom.
The union threatened future strikes unless their demands are met and said that it will walkout on December 27th of next year as well as January 3rd of 2011 if their demands are not met.