Socialist Worker

Postal workers say they’re ready to strike

by Nick Clark
Issue No. 2652

Postal workers broke thresholds and voted for strikes previously

Postal workers broke thresholds and voted for strikes previously


Postal workers have said they could ballot for national strikes over management bullying and attacks on terms and conditions.

Members of the CWU union voted at their annual postal industry conference this week for a motion that said they could ballot for industrial action.

It comes as top bosses at Royal Mail try to push through changes that will lead to job cuts.

One delegate told the conference that “Royal Mail are preparing for a battle—we have to be prepared to fight back.”

The motion said that there is a “growing toxic workplace culture” in Royal Mail offices.

An agreement between the CWU and Royal Mail signed early in 2018—the Four Pillars agreement—had promised a “change in culture” to deal with bullying.

Instead Royal Mail workers felt that in many cases the bullying had got worse—leading to walkouts across the country.

Walkouts

Amarjite Singh from South East Wales Amal branch said in his area there had been “five unofficial walkouts—in offices where there had never been one before.”

Rob Wotherspoon from Bristol and District Amal said, “There’s no doubt that there’s been an increased number of walkouts and strike ballots.”

Much of the motion also dealt with attempts by Royal Mail bosses to make changes to parcel deliveries that could cause job losses.

The Four Pillars agreement was meant to allow for changes that dealt with falling letter volumes and increased parcel volumes while protecting jobs and conditions. Yet bosses now want workers to deliver larger parcels separately to normal deliveries.

This could allow them to cut deliveries, extend delivery routes and change delivery times—threatening job loss and increased pressure.

Ralph Ferrett from Plymouth and East Cornwall Amal said, “The plan is that our members do more work for less. We’re going to have to fight to stop that. We might be looking at a war situation again.”


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