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Commuters in ELL boroughs face disrupted journeys on the Underground this week, as unions stage a two-day strike over proposed cuts to ticket offices.
The strike will take place from Tuesday at 9:30pm until Friday morning, with a second 48-hour strike planned from next Tuesday, February 11.
RMT and TSSA, the two transport unions involved in the strike, claim that up to 1,000 jobs are threatened by the proposed ticket office closures, and will render Underground transport inaccessible and less safe for many Londoners.
RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said: “London Underground’s own assessments show that their plans to axe nearly a thousand jobs, reorganise what is left and to close key services like ticket offices are relentlessly discriminatory.”
Mayor of London Boris Johnson accused Crow of “holding London to ransom,” and called the strikes “politically-motivated muscle-flexing”.
An RMT spokesperson responded to Johnson’s accusations, saying: “We’re not holding London to ransom. If anything, it is Johnson who is instigating all of this. He’s reneged on his promise to London to not close ticket offices. We’re only holding Boris Johnson to his election promises he made in 2008 and after.”
Although Overground, DLR, bus and Tramlink services will be unaffected by the strike, south east London commuters will see disruptions to the Jubilee, Central, Hammersmith and City and District Lines.
Commuters may also experience delays at Overground and DLR stations that interchange with the Underground.
TfL has confirmed which Underground services it intends to operate on its website but has urged commuters to continually check for updates and plan their routes in advance.
London Underground Managing Director, Mike Brown, noted that future plans for TfL include more staff on platforms and ticket halls to assist commuters with their ticket purchases.
He said: “We’re committed to implement changes to station staffing without compulsory redundancies and we’ve been clear that there’ll be a job for everyone at LU who wants to work for us and be flexible.”