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Chamber and committees

Keeping the Guard on ScotRail

  • Submitted by: Richard Leonard, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour.
  • Date lodged: Friday, 05 January 2024
  • Submitting member has a registered interest.

  • Motion reference: S6M-11780

That the Parliament recognises what it sees as the important role that guards play on the ScotRail network; notes that they have responsibilities for a wide range of safety-critical areas, to keep passengers and railways safe, including by preventing and responding to emergencies, preventing and deterring assaults, including sexual assaults, dealing with anti-social behaviour, providing assistance to disabled and older passengers and providing security; further notes that research into women and girls’ safety on public transport, which was published by the Scottish Government in 2023, found that the presence of staff on board trains and at stations made women and girls feel safer, and recommended that the Scottish Government increase staffing, including on board services; understands that the model of train operation known as Driver Only Operation (DOO) removes the guarantee of a second member of staff on board services; is opposed, therefore, to any further extension of DOO on the ScotRail network; notes, with concern, reports from the National Union of Rail Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) that ScotRail has proposed to roll out DOO on the newly-electrified Barrhead line; believes that any extension of DOO will discourage the public, particularly women, disabled people and older people, from using rail services and may encourage them to use less environmentally forms of transport, and considers, therefore, that the Scottish Government and ScotRail should commit to no further extension of DOO on Scotland’s railway, and reintroduce guards onto services currently operated via DOO.

Supported by: Ariane Burgess, Maggie Chapman, Foysol Choudhury, Katy Clark, Ross Greer, Monica Lennon (Registered interest) , Gillian Mackay, Ruth Maguire, Pauline McNeill, Mark Ruskell, Graham Simpson, Colin Smyth