Ten years ago, February 2004, 27 men and women merely making a living were killed because of the sheer irresponsibility of their employers.
The first group were the Chinese cocklers in Morecambe Bay.
The second were the rail maintenance workers from the Tebay disaster of February 15, 2004, our branch members.
The RMT has campaigned ever since Tebay for improved protection (secondary protection) on track.
This has still not been implemented as Network Rail has systematically dragged its feet, presumably because they do not want to incur financial responsibility for maximising the safety of workers in our world of privateers, cuts and encouragement only of possessive individualism (ie: capitalism) by all governments since the 1980s, now bolstered by the undemocratic European Union imperialist trade empire.
We the RMT (Lancaster/District) are holding our 10th memorial rally at Tebay on Saturday, February 15, urging the railway management to implement effective secondary protection and not try to wriggle out of it anymore.
All are welcome to attend and show their solidarity once again, unlike all politicians in the region with the notable exception of Ms Geraldine Smith (ex-Morecambe/Lonsdale MP). Notwithstanding Geraldine, not a single local councillor/county councillor has attended our rally in 10 years, be it noted. This has to change, and workers’ grievances must no longer be sidelined as have the Hillsborough victims, the Shrewsbury pickets and others too many to include here.
The rally is at noon, quarter of a mile south of Tebay, where the A685 goes over the railway lines at the memorial.
If we stand together we will win.
S K Metcalfe (personal capacity)
National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers