Tube workers are set to get a pay rise of 8.4 per cent next month after the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, agreed on a deal.
Currently, Tube drivers earn around £59,000 a year and from next month, they will be earning £ 5000 more each year.
For 15,000 stations staff and drivers, the final year of the four-year deal awards them with an RPI inflation rate, calculated in February and an additional 0.2 percentage points.
The pay rise is like it going to cost Transport of London £100 million, who have remained dependent on the Government bailouts to keep the services consistently running as the incomes fares went down during the pandemic.
On Wednesday, it was announced by the Office of National statistics that there would be an 8.4 per cent rise ready for London Underground workers.
“This binding agreement was made before anyone could have predicted the pandemic’s effects on our finances or the 30-year high inflationary levels that we are now experiencing,” said a TfL spokesperson.
Talks between Transport for London and the unions have got underway again and bosses and unions are haggling over how and when to pay the fare increases.
A TfL spokeswoman said that the binding agreement was signed before the pandemic and the ever-rising rate of inflation. No one could have predicted the effects that the health crisis had globally.
“As per the agreement, the pay increase for 2022/23 will be based on the RPI figure for February of 8.2 per cent plus 0.2 per cent and we will confirm the plan for implementation with employees in the coming days.”
Aslef, which is a union that represents most London tube drivers, stated that the major was doing the moral and right thing to stick to the deal which was agreed by both sides in 2019.
The unions also mentioned that it would allow tube drivers, who kept some public transport going during the pandemic, to avoid the decrease in wages while the Government try to sort out the country’s cost of living crisis.
John Leach is an RMT London regional organiser who felt that members had worked so hard over the pandemic to keep the public transport going in the capital throughout the pandemic and after the lockdowns.
The RMT wanted to establish the best deal for their members before the pandemic began and the four-year deal was formed from intense, detailed meetings and negotiations.
Also, a TSSA union spokeswoman said that the cost of living crisis has negatively affected workers everywhere as the bills for energy and food have increased dramatically.
“We’re pleased that our London Underground members will get the pay rise that was collectively negotiated by us and other unions several years ago.”
She also believes that all the TfL staff truly deserves their pay rise, including the many workers who have been affected by the job cuts and pay freezes over the years.
A 2 per cent rise was given to workers last year due to the inflation which was at 1.4 per cent. This is because there is an agreement clause in their contract that clearly states that there should be a minimum increase of 2 per cent.
There is a wide range of roles for staff but the majority don’t earn as much as the £58,949 full-time salary of the full-time Tube drivers.
Caroline Pidgeon, a member of the Lib-Dem party, feels that just setting a baseline of just one month’s inflation rates for pay rises and fares are not manageable and that a new way to set the waged and fares would need to be agreed upon for TfL staff.
A spokesman for GLA Conservatives travel, Keith Prince, also thought that the risks were not factored in and so the TfL have had still go ahead and pay for an 8.4 per cent pay rise for each London Underground staff member.