Socialist Worker


Transport from all over Britain

07 September 2002
CAMPAIGNERS in the Stop the War Coalition are uniting with local groups to get transport from across Britain to the 28 September demonstration. A 640-seat train is running through Glasgow and Edinburgh to the march. A further five coaches are booked from Edinburgh, and transport is organised from Greenock, Fife, Aberdeen and Dundee. In Runcorn, in the north west of England, and Bristol the postal workers' CWU union is running its own coaches to the demonstration. In Cardiff the CWU union has given £200 to help fund transport from the area. Around 100 coaches are booked from Birmingham. Around £10,000 has been raised to pay for billboard and newspaper adverts in the ru

National vote starts on strikes

24 August 2002
A NATIONAL strike ballot involving all 180,000 postal staff in Britain begins next Tuesday. It has been called by the CWU union in opposition to management plans to launch a joint venture with one of Britain's nastiest multinationals. Bosses want to transfer 4,000 CWU members in the Romec cleaning and maintenance section to a new company 49 percent owned by construction group Balfour Beatty.


13 July 2002
LEADERS OF the postal workers' CWU union have halted a national strike ballot. The vote was about the proposed joint venture between the Romec cleaning and engineering section and the private sector.


06 July 2002
CWU union leaders held back calls for a more combative response to attacks from Post Office management at the annual conference last week. But, because delegates were furious about management's assaults, the union leaders had to make occasional signs of militancy. Deputy general secretary John Keggie ordered the expulsion of the Royal Mail observers from the hall in response to news that some delegates were facing disciplinary charges for attending the conference.

In brief

01 June 2002
Alarming signals for bosses at BT WORKERS IN one section of BT have beaten off an attempt to hand them over to another firm. The dispute involved some 120 members of the CWU union in BT's RedCare section, which monitors BT alarms installed in business premises.

Stamp on this lousy deal

11 May 2002
LEADERS OF the CWU postal workers' union have called off a strike planned for this week. They claim they have achieved a "major victory" over pay. In fact they have surrendered to Royal Mail bosses' and threaten to weaken workers' ability to fight in the future. It is important that activists throw themselves into defeating the proposed deal in the forthcoming ballot.

Post workers

13 April 2002
A NATIONAL lobby of parliament by around 1,000 post workers was scheduled to take place this week. It came as heated arguments split the union's leadership over the response to the Post Office's announcement of mass job losses. The CWU union's top leaders support a deal to accept up to 30,000 job cuts as long as they are "voluntary".

Urgent-strikes needed

27 March 2002
Why have Post Office managers felt confident enough to move towards 40,000 job losses and the destruction of Parcelforce? One big reason has to be the behaviour of the CWU leaders last week. They met to discuss the possibility of holding a one-day strike over pay on Wednesday this week.

In the front line against Labour

23 March 2002
Postal Workers could hold a national strike on Wednesday of next week. It would be about pay. Postal workers are fed up with poverty pay-a basic of just £250 a week. Many work six days a week and start at around 5.30am. The executive of the CWU postal workers' union believed it had secured agreement over pay with Royal Mail. CWU deputy general secretary John Keggie said the deal would mean £300 a week pensionable pay by October 2003.

Post Office

16 March 2002
LEADERS OF the CWU postal workers' union were set this week to recommend that workers accept a new pay offer in a postal ballot. The deal is a disgrace which will open the way to new assaults on jobs and conditions.

Postal workers must slay monster of privatisation

16 March 2002
POSTAL WORKERS in the CWU union will take to the streets in London on Saturday to say no to privatisation. Postcomm, the postal regulator appointed by government, has proposed that private firms should be allowed to grab almost half the mail in Britain from April.

BT workers

02 March 2002
Some 377 CWU union members who work in the D&DS section of BT are being balloted to take strike action against plans to transfer them to a contractor, ComputaCentre. At a meeting of around 40 union members in London last week there was a heated exchange between the audience and a national executive member.

Union rifts with Labour deepen

02 March 2002
"There is a great deal of discontent among our rank and file with Labour." That is how Billy Hayes, leader of the Communication Workers Union (CWU), summed up why the union last week threatened to withhold £1 million from its donations to the Labour Party.


16 February 2002
Postal worker asks 'Should we fund the privatisers?' At a meeting of my CWU branch last week I put a motion to back the conference organised by the Socialist Alliance debating the political fund. The government's announcement of its steps to privatise the Post Office just added fuel to the fire. Why are we giving our money to New Labour when it is getting rid of thousands of jobs and wrecking the service? Our union gave over £1.5 million to Labour last year.

BT throws down gauntlet to union

09 February 2002
BT has issued a major challenge to its workers' CWU union, and the challenge looks set to spark a strike ballot. BT plans to transfer core workers to a private company.

Postal workers

08 December 2001
leaders of the CWU postal workers' union have postponed a decision over the timing of a national strike ballot until Monday of next week. On that day the union's postal executive will meet and hear reports on talks about pay and job security. Union insiders suggest that a deal on pay is likely.

Mark Dolan: Why we won it

01 December 2001
A Post Office disciplinary hearing last week found that Mark Dolan, treasurer of the CWU union branch in North/North West London, was innocent of the charges against him. A worker at the NDO office made a complaint against Mark after he had overheard a discussion about the World Trade Centre suicide attacks. Mark had said he was against the loss of life in New York, but that it was a result of US policies.

BT workers

24 November 2001
BT has thrown down the gauntlet to its workers' CWU union. BT completed its termination of the contracts of 279 London engineering workers last week. BT plans to close its FirstCall division next March, where over 1,000 permanent BT staff have been redeployed after cuts elsewhere in the company.

Postal Workers: Strike ballot on the way

24 November 2001
Around 160,000 postal workers will soon start a strike ballot over pay. The CWU union's deputy general secretary, John Keggie, announced the move at an anti-privatisation rally in Edinburgh on Saturday. Basic starting pay for a delivery postal worker is as little as £145.66 per week before tax. The top basic pay is £242.76 before tax outside London. Even with the maximum inner London allowances, the basic pay is a maximum of £291.58 a week before tax.


27 October 2001
AN EMPLOYMENT tribunal has unanimously agreed that Post Office management unfairly dismissed CWU union activist Mick Doherty. Mick, chair of the N/NW London CWU branch, was sacked after allegations of his involvement in football violence before last year's UEFA cup final in Copenhagen.

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