With a thumping 76 percent vote for strike action in the national ballot the leadership of the CWU union should be banging their war drums. So why are they busy sending peace signals instead?
After heated discussions at the union’s headquarters, deputy general secretary Dave Ward sent Royal Mail a “fresh offer” to avoid strike action and resolve the dispute.
Ward offered a settlement if Royal Mail agreed that further changes in the business and all current local disputes be resolved “by agreement”. The union also demanded an independent inquiry into bullying and harassment.
Royal Mail bosses showed their contempt almost immediately.
Managing director Mark Higson said, “If the union is serious about resolving this dispute they should immediately lift the threat of strike.”
Even before Higson’s blanket rejection it was clear that Royal Mail is out for blood and that the government is egging them on. The company should now face the full force of the union.
As Socialist Worker went to press there were signs that there would be two days of “functional” strike action beginning on Thursday of next week.
Of course this is welcome, but it must be only the start. And if the bosses are to be brought to heel, much tougher strikes must be called – and quickly.
Managers from all over Britain continue to flood into areas taking local strike action in an effort to break the backlog of mail. Scab mail centres are already processing millions of letters and packets.
The CWU has the power to stop them in their tracks. Several days of continuous action by all functions, combined with serious picketing would crush all the strike breaking attempts and create chaos in the system.
Postal workers have the power – let them use it.