Striking Southern Railway staff have been "demonised, bullied and harrassed" says the head of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Union.
Mick Cash was speaking after it was confirmed that industrial action will continue as planned, meaning more travel misery for commuters.
Cash insisted that Southern's obstinacy was to blame.
"We had a meeting yesterday with the company as to how we could move the issue on and keep the guard on the train," Cash said.
"That was declined, they rejected this and further discussions. All they want to do is introduce driver-only operation. They want to have the option of running the train after the second safety-critical person.
"We're in a position where our members have been demonised, bullied and harrassed. I think it's an absolute disgrace."
However Cash's claim was contradicted by Southern, whose passenger services director Alex Foulds said the RMT declined an offer they put forward.
"There's a lot to do, a lot to get right," he told Julia. "The situation we're in at the moment is one we all want to change.
"The RMT do not want to talk about this with us, so these last few months have been very frustrating for us."