OPPOSITION IS growing among postal workers to the new pay deal. The ballot has started and many workers are outraged at being offered a low pay deal which still has productivity strings attached.
Every activist should fight hard to build the biggest possible vote against the deal. Throwing it out would be a good step towards a fight over all the attacks postal workers are facing.
Postcomm, the government-appointed regulator, was due to announce this week the results of consultation on competition. The indications were that the only concession would be to slightly extend the deadline it proposed before companies are allowed to take away Post Office work. The initial move to open up a third or a half of mail services to competition was expected to be postponed to next year and full opening to the market from 2006 to 2007.
None of this changes the overall government objective of privatising and outsourcing huge chunks of the post. Meanwhile private companies are continuing with their plans to seize profitable business and provide scabbing services.
Hays and TNT have applied to the postal regulator for changes to their licences 'to carry out a wider range of activities in the event of industrial action by Royal Mail workers'.
Express Dairies has also applied for a licence to deliver packets and parcels through its milk float network. It wants to carry nearly five million items a year. Around 18,000 workers in London are to ballot for strikes over the continuing victimisation of Tom Doherty.
An employment tribunal told him last week that he would have to wait months to find out if he will get his job back. Both Tom and his brother Mick have already won tribunals against their unfair dismissal. But the Post Office has refused to re-employ them.
Around 80 postal workers in Barry, South Wales, struck unofficially for a day last week after they were told to do extra work without agreement.
The new issue of Post Worker, the rank and file newspaper, leads on rejection of the pay deal. For copies ring 07904 157 779.