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RMT boss Mick Lynch ‘has not met Government minister since January'

RMT leader Mick Lynch has said he has not met a Government minister since January (Jonathan Brady/PA)
Ted Hennessey, PA

Transport union chief Mick Lynch has said he has not met a Government minister since January despite strike action continuing.

Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union will strike on July 20, 22 and 29, following more than a year of industrial action in a long-running dispute over pay, jobs and conditions.

Station staff, train managers and catering staff will be involved in the action, with passengers advised to check their travel arrangements.

Amid talks between ministers and other unions, Mr Lynch told Sky’s Sophy Ridge On Sunday programme: “No contact. They seem to pick out the RMT as a special category where they can’t negotiate on a reasonable basis.

“We’re available to talk to them, but I don’t think I’ve met a Government minister since January, and even the employers now have stopped negotiating.

“So I don’t know whether they’re waiting for all this other stuff to be cleared out the way. We don’t know if there’s going to be settlements yet – they’re out for referendum and consultation with their members, we’ll see.

“They’ve certainly offered the others more than we’ve been offered. There’s no strings attached to those deals; we’ve got to accept a whole host of change and dilution to those terms and conditions, and job losses.”

Mr Lynch said strikes will continue until an agreement is reached.

Shadow business secretary Jonathan Reynolds said: “I think the Government’s got to recognise – I think it has recognised – its early approach was completely wrong.

“And actually the lack of respect they’ve shown for a lot of the public sector, I think, has been one of the aggravating factors in the industrial action we’ve seen.”