The result was due this week from an important strike ballot over transfers of work without agreement. Although it covers only just over 1,000 people, their action could halt the entire Royal Mail operation in Britain.
The workers affected are employed at several centres including Essex, north London and Nottingham. But the key office is the National Distribution Centre (NDC) at Crick near Northampton.
It can handle up to 47 million items of post a day, a crucial part of the national network.
Royal Mail might try to reroute work round it, but it is unlikely other postal workers would be willing to cooperate with such scabbing.
The Northamptonshire CWU union which covers Crick says, “This dispute is not just about protecting jobs and additional earnings, it is about safeguarding trade union recognition at NDC.
“Our work has been compulsorily and permanently transferred without agreement with the CWU at local or national level.
“This action by management has been taken despite a formal disagreement being submitted by the CWU on their plans. Their actions are a serious breach of the nationally agreed processes for resolving disagreements.
“The actions of NDC management are symptomatic of the way they have acted for the last couple of years.
“During this time they have refused to honour written agreements that have been reached with the CWU.
“They have also applied sick absences procedures in a way that has caused extreme anxiety and upset for many members. ? “Managers are now trying to set up employee groups that exclude the elected union representatives.”
If the ballot is for action, the CWU executive should call strike action to hit management hard.