I never thought I would hear myself saying this, but I can find some sympathy for the RMT unions case (I may not hold the same view if I were a member of the poor old travelling public!!!). In just about every Government Department, Local Council and now the Railways and Underground, we see the 'Fat Cats' getting fatter and the 'Coal Face Workers' getting fewer. I heard some 'Clown' on the radio saying "These reductions in staffing levels will not compromise security or public safety". Of course they won't, for the simple reason, there is no security to start with, that vanished long ago and there are hundreds of Stations with no staff at all. If there were to be an accident 'Joe Public' would just have to fend for him or herself. In the early forties I worked on Hampton Station the Station was manned from the first train to the last. These days late at night, the Station is a lonely place, for a female travelling on her own. I suppose we should be grateful for CCTV, at least if you were to be attacked, you may be able to pick out your assailants from your hospital bed!!! Well that has got that off my chest. Yours aye. Bryan.
Unless there's a very real danger that I'd miss my train I steadfastly refuse to use the new ticket machines and would always prefer to queue for the Ticket Office. I refuse to give Network Rail the ammunition they need to be able to point towards data which 'proves' that passengers 'prefer' to use the ticket machines.
Similarly whenever I find myself in a supermarket, even with a small basket of a couple of items, I won't use those Self Scan points. One assistant once saw me queuing for the tills and suggested I use the self service area.
"No Thanks, I'm happy to queue"
"But this would be so much quicker"
"That's possibly true but I'd like you to still have the opportunity to be employed here in a few years time, which you probably won't if those things take off"
The proposed rail strike is an interesting issue. My understanding, I we are to believe what we hear, is that this is predominantly about changing the working patterns of rail maintenance staff so that more track maintenance can be done at night, thereby reducing holiday and daytime rail suspensions. My ex-colleagues in the Railway Inspectorate have already stated that this would have no safety implications but, a couple of weeks ago, the Guardian reported that management were expected to offer more money; I find it difficult to reconcile what is supposed to be a safety issue with a financial incentive to accept the proposal. I await the outcome with interest.
I always seem to break those self-service supermarket checkouts. I must be statically charged, or something!