The planned strike from the RMT comes at a time of already exacerbated frustrations from local commuters over a change which many see as insignificant compared to the other major issues. As a result, it is difficult for many to understand. Strike action is not the solution and I urge all parties to come together in order to avert the additional significant disruption this will cause to commuters.
As I have said repeatedly before, commuters rightly expect Southern Rail to be fully held to account for the ongoing problems and atrocious service, with the current situation being simply not good enough. The main priority for Southern should be to ensure that it carries out the original service it promised to do, with maximum efficiency. Frustratingly, the response from Southern has not convinced that this will happen soon enough. In the meantime, Southern should be working to ensure the trains it does run are on time, with passengers swiftly given full compensation for delayed trains, whilst also not being punished for standing in first class carriages on badly overcrowded trains.
I will continue to raise these issues with Southern Rail, the Department for Transport and will pursue what is right for my constituents, some of which inform me that their jobs have been threatened as a result of the ongoing situation.