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More post workers join unofficial walkout over racism and victimisation

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Issue 2675
Royal Mail workers in Bootle on Thursday
Royal Mail workers in Bootle on Thursday (Pic: John Carr)

Hundreds of postal workers at a major Royal Mail hub have joined an unofficial strike over racism and victimisation.

Members of the CWU union at the Warrington mail centre—which distributes post across the north west—walked out on Friday morning. They joined workers at the Bootle and Seaforth delivery office, who have been on strike since Wednesday after a manager made an alleged racist comment.

The strike spread to Warrington after drivers from the mail centre were suspended for refusing to cross the picket line in Bootle and Seaforth.

After the action spread to Warrington, the CWU North West region said, “One of the most important components of any union is solidarity.”

Speaking to Socialist Worker on Wednesday, one CWU member in the Bootle office said, “We stand up for one another, that’s the rule here. We are not going to let managers use any sort of attacks to weaken us.

“There are people from different backgrounds here but we are all workers and trade union members and we know to stick together or we’re lost.

“I don’t want to go back working with a manager who stands accused of racism. Racism is something for trade unions to take up and oppose.”

The unofficial action comes as CWU members across the country vote on whether to strike over Royal Mail plans to attack their conditions and slash jobs. The worker said the mood over the national ballot is giving post workers confidence.

“There a strong feeling in the branch at the moment because of the national strike ballot,” they said. “We’re all lining up to support a fight. I think that has helped us take action now.”

Dave Ward, the union’s general secretary, said that the national campaign to win a strike vote against Royal Mail attacks “has made me prouder than ever to lead the union”.

“When you think that couldn’t be topped, an office have walked after a manager made an allegedly racist comment,” he said.

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