Huge queues outside bus stops, lots of road traffic; both cars and bikes, and London losing out on £50 million today according to the Daily Mail.
So why the strike?
Well, the strikes are over 800 jobs that are proposed to be axed… yes 800!!!
An estimated 90% of stations affected by the staff reductions will be in outer London. The controversy is that the now Mayor Boris Johnson actively campaigned on a ticket to save jobs at ticket offices, quite deceivingly, as it was never Ken’s intention to leave stations that were under TfL control totally unmanned.
Ken Livingstone highlighted a campaign we championed in Brent in the Harrow Times to highlight the importance of staff at tube stations:
He said, “we had a huge campaign about four years ago because a banker was stabbed to death as he left Kensal Rise station, which was unmanned.
“I gave a commitment that all the stations that came under the control of TfL would have staff in them.
“Nobody wants to come out of the station at 11pm seeing that there’s no one on the platform and no one on the barrier.”
My electoral ward includes two major underground stations on the Jubilee Line (Neasden and Dollis Hill) and borders another (Willesden Green). Leaving these stations unmanned will be an invitation to criminals. Presence prevents crime.
So what has been the Mayor Boris Johnson’s approach?
In the lead up to the strikes, HE DIDN’T EVEN MET THE UNION LEADERS TO NEGOTIATE!!!!!
This is the most barmy part of it all. During the 2008 London Mayoral election campaign, Boris said that he would move to negotiate a no strike deal with the Unions. Yesterday, it emerged that in what is set to be a disruptive ordeal for many Londoners, that he hasn’t even intervened personally to try and strive for a resolution. All we’ve seen from him is some media interviews.
London needs a Mayor that’s about action in this strained economic climate. Not one that leaves the work to his officers. After all, the Mayor of London is a serious role, not a ceremonial one.