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To: Ryan Flaherty, Managing Director, Serco Caledonian Sleeper & Bill Reeve, Director of Rail, Transport Scotland

Keep staff and passengers safe – Tackle worker fatigue at Serco Caledonian Sleeper

RMT reached agreement in dispute.

RMT is calling for Serco and Transport Scotland to take action to tackle widespread worker fatigue on the Serco Caledonian Sleeper.

Why is this important?

The overnight Caledonian Sleeper services run between London and Scotland with staff working 15 hour shifts on average.

Work related fatigue is widespread amongst Caledonian Sleeper staff. Fatigue is a serious issue which can cause long-term health effects, including depression and anxiety, headaches and digestive problems and risks passenger and staff safety. Even a risk assessment commissioned by Serco found that staff fatigue was a significant problem that the employer needed to address.

RMT believes that a key cause of staff fatigue is a lack of berths (cabins) for staff rest periods. For months, RMT has been seeking to engage with Serco to agree a resolution to these issues. Yet, Serco has shown a complete lack of willingness to act on this issue. RMT also believes that the staff fatigue has been compounded by the additional pressures of Covid-19.

In an attempt to negotiate a safe and fair resolution to this dispute, RMT has suggested that Serco temporarily make an additional two berths available for staff rest periods, which would bring the total number of berths available for this purpose to three, with the aim of reducing staff fatigue, and suggests that this arrangement would be reviewed every twelve weeks or sooner, in light of Covid-19.

Due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis, the Serco Caledonian Sleeper franchise is being funded with public money, in the form of an Emergency Measures Agreement. Yet, Transport Scotland has, so far, refused to intervene on this matter, even though millions of pounds of public money is being used to prop up Serco Caledonian Sleeper.

RMT members took part in industrial action in October 2020 in defense of staff and passenger safety and further industrial action is scheduled for December 2020.

Unfortunately, RMT believes that there is no willingness on the part of either Serco or Transport Scotland to resolve this dispute. Yet, RMT is demanding nothing more than a safe working environment for all of Serco Caledonian Sleeper’s hardworking employees and a safe environment for passengers.

Therefore, RMT is calling on Transport Scotland and the Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, Michael Matheson MSP to immediately intervene and instruct Serco to settle this dispute.

Please show your support by signing this petition and supporting staff safety on the Caledonian Sleeper.




2021-02-05 17:15:42 +0000

Petition is successful with 1,788 signatures

2020-11-06 20:09:27 +0000

1,000 signatures reached

2020-11-06 15:15:04 +0000

500 signatures reached

2020-11-02 16:47:43 +0000

100 signatures reached

2020-11-02 15:25:04 +0000

50 signatures reached

2020-11-02 14:48:39 +0000

25 signatures reached

2020-11-02 14:32:24 +0000

10 signatures reached