Socialist Worker

Post workers say it's the bosses who are overpaid

by Paul Moffat, CWU Eastern Region secretary
Issue No. 2053

A demonstration against the closure of the mail centre in Coventry in March (Pic: Pete Jackson)

A demonstration against the closure of the mail centre in Coventry in March (Pic: Pete Jackson)

Postal Workers are on track to deliver a huge yes vote in their strike ballot and send their strong message that enough is enough.

Employees from Post Office Ltd (counters workers) and Royal Mail will unite in action over the lack of future vision from the business and a government that is threatening the future of the service and its employees.

The messages that have galvanised our members are clear. Royal Mail bosses Allan Leighton and Adam Crozier state that postal workers are 25 percent overpaid and 40 percent underworked.

This belief led to a paltry offer of either a 2.5 percent basic pay increase or a one off £600 lump sum.

Such a deal, indicating their contempt for the employees, was also dependent on acceptance of harsh productivity strings.

Senior directors and managers claim that they have kindly agreed to a pay freeze this year.

But Royal Mail has five senior managers in the top 30 highest paid state employees, and 16 directors who collectively earned over £4 million in 2005-6.

Is it any wonder they can make this magnanimous gesture?

The dynamic duo believe that our workers are overpaid and underworked, and that the business is haemorrhaging work to competitors.

But at the same time there is the money to install plasma screens – costing £6,000 each – in every delivery office, mail centre and post office counter through out the country to pump out propaganda.

There are 2,000 delivery offices, approximately 450 Post Office counters and 78 mail centres which have had more than one screen installed.

So let's do the math. Multiply this by £6,000 per screen, which equates to approximately £15 million.

Is this a sound business philosophy bearing in mind they do not work? Then they have the brass neck to state they cannot afford to give our low paid workers a decent pay rise.

Across the country, workers are united in the belief that the time is right for the fightback and members of the CWU union must back a yes vote in the industrial action ballot.

We have delivered members' meetings across the region, capturing all the shifts, to get across our message that we are all in a fight for the future of the service and its workers.

The success of these meetings is the result of hard work by union reps at every level.

Our members have had enough of pay cuts and a slave's charter from the business.

They believe that a no vote is a vote for no reward, a vote for worsening terms and conditions, a vote for job losses, a reduction in take home pay and a vote for the sounding of the death knell for the businesses.

The postal workers' ballot result will be announced on 7 June during the CWU union conference.

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