CWU union members in Royal Mail were set to begin voting on the deal their union has reached with bosses as Socialist Worker went to press. The ballot had been due to start on Thursday of last week but was delayed.
Dave Ward, CWU deputy general secretary, is urging workers to vote yes. But he admitted there had been “relentless budget cuts, job losses and an increase in variable workloads” in the run-up to the privatisation of Royal Mail.
Accepting the deal will only make matters worse and members should reject it.
The deal talks of working with Royal Mail to build a “can do culture” and “improving efficiency”. This will mean increased workloads and more pressure for workers.
As one worker in Cambridge told Socialist Worker, “It’s outrageous. It doesn’t deal with the problems of deliveries. It’s the same as the last deal, where issues still haven’t been resolved.”
And the deal states that Royal Mail can withdraw the agreement under what it calls “exceptional circumstances”. One of these is if the union calls a national strike.
The agreement will be reviewed again in 2019, so this is effectively a no-strike deal for five years. This would be disastrous.
Merlin Reader, a CWU rep ECDO in London, told Socialist Worker in a personal capacity, “If the deal goes ahead it will allow privatisation where it has been suggested in writing.”