5.7% pay rise puts Scotrail drivers on the right track
Train drivers at First Scotrail will receive pay rises of more than £1,700 a year if they accept a new offer worth 5.7% over 15 months.
The award, which is backdated to the beginning of the year and is equivalent to a 4.56% increase over 12 months, will raise the annual salary of a qualified driver to £32,011. Trainees' pay will increase to £18,193 a year, with newly qualified drivers receiving £25,283 during their first six months.
The drivers will also get an extra 10 days' annual leave, improved sick pay and free leisure travel on Scotrail trains for themselves, their partners and their dependent children - at present, they receive only 10 free leisure journeys per year.
The Aslef and RMT rail unions are recommending acceptance of the deal to their almost 900 members at the company. Aslef district organiser Kevin Lindsay described it as "reasonable" and said he expected it to be accepted, but observed that Scotrail drivers will still be among the worst-paid in the rail industry. He said the union will seek further increases towards the £34,000 average salary for drivers in England.
The results of union ballots on the offer are expected early next month. Other Scotrail staff have said they will be looking for a "no less favourable" settlement in their own 2007 negotiations with the company, which begin this month.