Labour’s shadow minister for buses and local transport has defied Keir Starmer’s orders not to join picket lines for striking workers.
Sam Tarry justified his decision speaking on Good Morning Britain this morning, saying: “If we don’t make a stand today, people’s lives could be lost.”
This comes after Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, who Ladbrokes said is now favourite to be next prime minister, told his MPs not to join striking workers.
On Wednesday morning, 40,000 train and rail workers across the country walked out in protest of pay, working conditions and voluntary redundancies.
Starmer however said yesterday, according to The Times,: “The Labour Party in opposition needs to be the Labour Party in power and a government doesn’t go on picket lines.”
It was reported that Labour’s chief whip will speak to shadow front bench politicians who joined the picket, today.
Speaking on GMB, Tarry said: “Some of the lowest-paid workers are on strike today in the rail industry: safety critical workers, workers who make sure our railways get people to work and do so safely.
“It can’t be accepted any more that people just have to accept inflation is out of control.
“The government is doing nothing on the cost of living crisis, and I tell you what’s shameful — I believe strongly that if we had a Labour government right now this dispute wouldn’t be happening because we would actually be round the table.”
Labour has been asked for comment as to whether Tarry will be disciplined. Other shadow cabinet members, including David Lammy, echoed Starmer’s warning about joining pickets this morning.