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Posted on 27 February 2017 at 12:39 GMT

RMT plans protest against 'driver only' Merseyrail trains

Roger Bannister, at NSSN conference 2015., photo Senan

Roger Bannister, at NSSN conference 2015., photo Senan   (Click to enlarge)

On 7 March 2017 at 9.30am the RMT union will be staging a protest in Derby Square, Liverpool, against the introduction of 'driver only operated' trains on Merseyrail.

I intend to support this protest to show my support for this campaign and my solidarity with the RMT. Driver only trains will result in a loss of conductor jobs and an increase in risk to rail passengers.

Studies indicate that accidents getting on and off trains would increase if there is no conductor on the train, and passengers feel more secure if there is a conductor on board trains to deal with problems such as anti-social behaviour, crime and on-board accidents of one sort or another.

Labour's role in this is disgraceful - councillors are pushing it through, local MPs are making no comment. As TUSC metro-mayoral spokesperson I will continue to hold them to account on this.

I believe Merseyrail, and the wider public transport network, should be returned to full public ownership and run under democratic control including by trade unions and the travelling public.

Roger Bannister, Trades Unionist and Socialist Coalition Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor spokesperson

This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 27 February 2017 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

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