THE government-appointed regulator for postal services has come up with madcap proposals which could give bosses an excuse to cut another 5,000 jobs. Graham Corbett, the head of Postcomm, says the price of stamps can rise by 1p but at the same time the average price of all mail products must be 29.1p. This would mean cuts in prices for services such as special delivery and the loss of up to £500 million in revenue.
The regulator's proposals will be welcomed most by businesses, the biggest users of 'non-standard' mail services. The postal workers' CWU union has rightly condemned the plans. 'Experts say the regulator is either incompetent or ill-intentioned towards the public postal service. In either case, trade secretary Patricia Hewitt should dispense with his services,' CWU leader Billy Hayes said.
But in a drab repeat of other failed campaigns, the union leaders want to run their latest one in partnership with Allan Leighton, the Post Office chairman. It is Leighton who has pushed through 30,000 job cuts and who has attacked union rights.
The postal market will be 'liberalised' in three months time and private firms will be able to grab up to 30 percent of British postal traffic. At the same time bosses want to hand the Cash Handling and Distribution section to Securicor. It is time for real action.
ACTIVISTS MAY like to know that the CWU union took part in a fringe meeting at the Tory party conference in Bournemouth on Monday, along with Tim Yeo, the Tories' shadow department of industry secretary.
The meeting was sanctioned by the same union leaders who denounce any attempt to give part of the union's political fund to socialist organisations.
'SINCE ITS launch, Post Worker has provided the lowdown on the post industry. While the union and Royal Mail portray privatisations and partnership deals as inevitable, Post Worker reports the opposition felt by rank and file post workers. That's why, love it or hate it, you can't ignore it. Nationally we sell over 5,000 of every issue, and it is going up.'
Chaz Curry, CWU rep, Exeter
Post Worker, the paper for rank and file post workers, price 20p - phone 07904 157 779 for your copy.