CWU union reps are meeting this week for a national briefing in a climate of continued attacks on the postal service and the conditions of its workers.
The CWU’s political campaign against the privatisation of Royal Mail has once again won a manifesto statement from Gordon Brown’s New Labour, committing the government to keeping it 100 percent publicly owned. While this is a good start, it is not enough.
The Hooper Review of Liberalisation of the Postal Industry is due to report at the end of this month.
Whatever the outcome, the CWU must demand that the government stops the regulator Postcomm from undermining Royal Mail in favour of other firms.
The impact of liberalisation must be reversed, so that a financially stable Royal Mail can afford to not only invest in new machinery, but to invest in the workforce as well.
Whatever the outcome of the next general election, postal workers will have to fight for the future of their industry, pensions and jobs.
Right here, right now, it is Brown’s New Labour that will decide what to implement from the Hooper Review. We have to keep them under pressure.
CWU conference policy is to ballot the membership by March 2009 on whether to fund Labour’s general election campaign.
CWU activists must also prepare to stop Royal Mail’s ongoing attacks.
If it chooses to carry on regardless with mail centre closures, or impose further automation, we must ballot for strike action.
If they refuse to negotiate on pensions, we must ballot for strike action. We must start the campaign needed to prepare the members for this, and we must start it now.