Hammond slams strikes

 
Steve Dinneen
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Transport secretary Philip Hammond has branded the latest round of Tube strikes “highly irresponsible” and said the union’s behaviour will lead to tougher industrial laws.

The RMT union, headed up by Bob Crow, has announced six strike days. They will down tools for between nine and 24 hours between 16 and 20 May and again from 13 to 17 June.

Hammond told parliament: “No one in this government is spoiling for a fight with the unions but the unions appear to be spoiling for a fight with London.

“I say to the RMT and other unions that this kind of irresponsible strike action, where an alternative, proper remedy is available, is only strengthening the hand of those including the mayor who are calling for tougher industrial relations laws.”

Boris Johnson has slammed the action, calling on the government to bring in tough laws to stamp out further strikes.

He said: “There is a great deal of sense in reform of the union law and the government needs to get a move on.. London Underground is one of the indispensable networks for one of the greatest cities in the world. I don’t think it should be held to ransom by a small minority of union hotheads.”

Transport secretary Philip Hammond says Bob Crow’s strikes will eventually lead to tougher union laws.