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Sydney Trains NIF: An urgent update

As members would NSW Trains and Transport for NSW have been attempting to push through an operating model for the New InterCity Fleet (NIF) that strips all safety responsibilities from Guards and places them solely on the shoulders of Drivers.

If TfNSW and NSW trains are successful in pushing through their flawed model this sets a dangerous precedent for our entire network.  This is an attempt to introduce Driver Only Operations by stealth and we cannot let them get away with this.

RTBU Delegates and members have been fighting this flawed operating model for years, but despite our interventions NSW Trains and TfNSW have taken active steps to exclude your Union and Health and Safety Representatives from the process.

NSW Trains members are so concerned about the safety of the community and their workmates that when surveyed 98% of members endorsed a resolution that they won’t crew the NIF in its current and unsafe form.

In the proposed operating model:

  • The Guard will be replaced with a “Customer Service Guard”, a role that has had all safety responsibilities stripped with a reduced classification to reflect this.
  • Drivers are expected to take on all safety responsibilities and have been offered a measly 4% to do this.
  • To so called “Customer Service Guard” will no longer provide an absolute Right of Way. Traction interlocking on the door means the Guard will be confined to their cab at arrival and departure with no ability to hear what’s going on, on the platform.
  • The Driver is expected to monitor CCTV at arrival and departure as well as driving the train.
  • The Passenger Emergency Button will no longer connect to the Guard, instead commuters will be put through to a call centre.
  • And of course, they have chucked in an in-cab camera.
  • We don’t know what this means for Station Staff, who have also been left out of the conversation.

This model will have disastrous consequences for workers and commuters alike. As a Union we cannot accept that.

This is a fight the RTBU is throwing everything at and at some stage soon we will need all members to demonstrate their solidarity.

Members will be kept updated and developments occur.

In Union.

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