Strikes across the country and region are back on as of today as workers continue to take industrial action throughout January.

With the end of last year marked by mass strikes by transport workers and staff at the NHS, Royal Mail, schools and the civil service; industrial unrest is set to continue as disputes between trade unions and the government rumble on.

Britain’s “winter of discontent” is rolling into the new year with railway staff and workers across sectors committed to further strike action, citing a lack of resolution around pay and working conditions.

Across the country, rail workers, bus drivers, Scottish teachers, nurses, ambulance workers and civil servants are also expected to stop working in the coming weeks.

Rail workers on strike outside Snow Hill Station in Birmingham last June Adam Yosef
Rail workers on strike outside Snow Hill Station in Birmingham last June
Birmingham New Street Station yesterday (2 January) ahead of strike action this weekAdam Yosef
Birmingham New Street Station yesterday (2 January) ahead of strike action this week
Buses in Oxford Street in London just before Christmas Eve last month Adam Yosef
Buses in Oxford Street in London just before Christmas Eve last month

London bus drivers, teachers in Scotland, postal workers, nurses, Eurostar security personnel, Border Force agents, Heathrow baggage handlers, G4S employees, driving examiners, and National Highway Workers have all already walked out in the last month.

Unions have warned of an escalation in action, with strike ballots for teachers in England and Wales and firefighters to close in this month,  junior doctors also expected to be balloted.

Paul Nowak, the new general secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), described a “rolling wave” of strikes unless Rishi Sunak’s government budge on pay demands., with unions taking coordinated action so that stoppages happen either on the same day or in quick succession.

Mick Lynch, chief at the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT), said the Government was to blame for the ongoing chaos crippling the transport network, with staff walkouts planned on today (Tuesday), Wednesday and on Friday and Saturday.

Trade union members protest during Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham in October last yearAdam Yosef
Trade union members protest during Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham in October last year
Rail workers on strike outside New Street Station in Birmingham last June Adam Yosef
Rail workers on strike outside New Street Station in Birmingham last June

As the rows rage over pay and working conditions, Lynch blasted the Conservatives’ “radio silence” response, saying: “I hope we can all work towards a deal but we haven’t heard from anyone formally since mid-December.”

Urging ministers to help strike a deal to break the deadlock, he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: “The Government simply will not give a mandate to the employers – Network Rail and the train operators – that will allow this deal to be resolved. They are sitting on their hands and noted by their absence from this scene.

“They have put a block on the deal and they are an obstacle rather than a facilitator, which is unfortunate. All they want is to bash the unions,” he added.


Are rail workers striking?

On January 5, train drivers in the Aslef union will walk out at 15 companies, in addition to action already planned by the RMT union, meaning that train services will be crippled throughout the week when millions of commuters would be heading back to work.

Nationwide train strike dates begin today (Tuesday 3 January) with nearly all operators expected to be impacted. On strike days it is expected that just one in five trains will run but on days following a strike, timetables will be roughly 60% of normal capacity.

Train strikes are taking place on:

Tuesday 3 January
Wednesday 4 January
Thursday 5 January
Friday 6 January
Saturday 7 January

When are national and regional strikes in January?

Tuesday 3 January:

  • RMT members working for National Rail restart strike action
  • National Highways traffic officers to begin nationwide strike
  • The DVSA (Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency) strike continues in the east of England, East Midlands, West Midlands and parts of London, while staff at the RPA (Rural Payment Agency) resume their action

Wednesday 4 January:

  • The RMT rail strike continues.
  • Second day of nationwide strike by National Highways traffic officers
  • The DVSA driving examiners’ strikes will start in London, south-east England, south-west England and Wales. RPA staff continue their action
  • Bus drivers employed by Abellio in south and west London begin strike action

Thursday 5 January:

  • Train drivers represented by Aslef launch a national day of strike action
  • The DVSA strike continues in London, south-east England, south-west England and Wales. RPA staff continue their action Bus drivers employed by Abellio continue their industrial action

Friday 6 January:

  • The RMT stages another 48-hour strike
  • The DVSA strike continues in London, south-east England, south-west England and Wales. RPA staff continue their action.
  • National Highways workers in the east Midlands and eastern regions will begin strike action

Saturday 7 January:

  • The RMT rail strike continues
  • The DVSA strike continues in London, south-east England, south-west England and Wales, while the National Highways workers in the east Midlands and eastern regions take strike action for the second consecutive day

Sunday 8 January

  • The DVSA strike continues in London, south-east England, south-west England and Wales

Monday 9 January:

  • The DVSA strike continues in London, south-east England, south-west England and Wales. RPA staff resume their action

Tuesday 10 January:

  • The Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS) union will strike in primary schools, special schools and early years provision
  • Bus drivers employed by Abellio in south and west London continue strike action
  • The DVSA strike continues in London, south-east England, south-west England and Wales. RPA staff continue their action

Wednesday 11 January:

  • Ambulance workers represented by Unison and GMB set to strike in England and Wales
  • The EIS union will stage another strike, but this time in secondary schools and secondary special schools. RPA staff continue their action
Rail workers on strike outside New Street Station in Birmingham last June Adam Yosef
Rail workers on strike outside New Street Station in Birmingham last June

Thursday 12 January:

  • Prospect members who work on the Elizabeth line will go on strike
  • Bus drivers employed by Abellio in south and west London continue strike action. RPA staff continue their action

Friday 13 January:

  • RPA staff continue their action

Monday 16 January:

  • Bus drivers employed by Abellio in south and west London continue strike action
  • EIS to stage a national strike for 16 consecutive days until 2 February, which will see members in two local authorities strike each day

Wednesday 18 January:

  • Nurses represented by the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) begin a second round of strike action in England, Wales and Northern Ireland

Thursday 19 January:

  • The nurses continue strike action into a second day
  • Bus drivers employed by Abellio in south and west London continue strike action. RPA staff continue their action

Monday 23 January:

  • Unison members working for five ambulance services in England will stage another walkout

Wednesday 25 January:

  • Bus drivers employed by Abellio in south and west London continue strike action

Thursday 26 January:

  • Bus drivers employed by Abellio in south and west London continue strike action

WATCH | RMT strikes at Birmingham New Street Station:

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