Thursday, 9 February 2012

Bonus' injustice on the Railways

As commuters across the country are being squeezed by increasing fees absurd bonuses are being handed out to Railtrack bosses.
Sir David Higgins was due to get £336,000's as a performance bonus this May which is 60% of his current wage of £560,000 PA!  This is a staggering percentage when commuters across the country are paying up to a third of their annual income on train travel.

Since the figures came to light however Sir David and the other directors have said they will not take the money instead they will put the money into greater Health and Safety measures at level crossings following the announcement from the Bazlinton and Thompson case, (Olivia Bazlinton and Charlotte Thompson aged 14 and 13 respectively were hit by a train after passing through an unlocked pedestrian level crossing gate.) which is very noble of them, though I wonder if they would have done so had it not been made public, however that is neither here nor there.

The question I'd rise is this the same for Southeastern and the other Franchise holders? What are their bonuses? I know its not very liberal to pry into the bonuses or indeed to control them however with this new notion of responsible capitalism and greater fairness for the Consumer/worker it may be in the interest of overall fairness.

Rail unions have applauded the decision and TSSA union leader Manuel Cortes has said;
We said last week that it beggared belief that National Rail could be talking about a multi-million, long term bonus scheme within days of admitting criminal behaviour over the deaths.

But wait!!! The unions aren't innocent in this either. Lets turn the spotlight to the RMT, TSSA and the Underground. Personally I don't use the underground much, it is too expensive and I'd rather walk and get some exercises and see the beautiful city I work in, well the bit I work in is nice anyway but I've seen the chaos caused by the spate of one day strikes for any numerous reasons. The London press is also keen to tell us how much Tube drivers get paid and from memory it is around £40,000 pa which is a pretty princely sum but as the Olympics get closer a pay deal is again being debated. An offer of £500's was made as a bonus for working through the Olympics which is an increase of £400's on their original offer.

Other employers, notably London Overground, Network Rail and most recently DLR, have come up with serious offers and agreements and we expect LU to do the same.
It is well documented that transport will be the biggest technical challenge throughout the Olympic period with massive pressure on staff and services from moving millions of extra passengers around Greater London and the South East. says Bob Crow head of the RMT

OK I can see their point that it is going to be a nightmare. Its going to be hard enough Commuting to London as well as working in a Tourist attraction, as I do, in central London but I'm not getting any extra bonuses for doing so. The fee stands at an extra £20's a shift and the LU have offered to be as flexible as they can this is the best offer that can be given and the Unions, in my mind, are just being obtuse.  After all their pay is already pretty damn impressive and they want more? This money ultimately comes from the consumer's pocket and the costs we pay, how is this fair?
UNITE, the bus drivers union is also arguing it isn't enough for their staff and haven't ruled out industrial action! So we have to suffer that as well?

It is dis-heartening as a Commuter to see this and I'm sure that others feel the same way.

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