Come the month of May. we will see Post Office employees strike to protest against what the CWU describe as a “degrading” real terms pay cut.
CWU members will be taking one day of strike action on Tuesday 3rd May, after having delivered an overwhelming 97.3% vote in favour of industrial action.
How to avoid the Post Office employees strike
Fear not for your ecommerce shipments however, only CWU members will be striking and as many Post Offices are run by third parties they will still be open. It’s likely that most main town centre Post Offices will be impacted by strike action, but those run by the likes of Tesco whose staff run my local Post Office will still be behind their counters ready to serve you. Be prepared to look for an alternative location if your regular Post Office isn’t able to take your post that day. Also Royal Mail are separate from the Post Office and so parcels will still be collected. As a last resort, consider printing your labels at send.royalmail.com and drop them at your local delivery office.
Post Office employees strike won’t be the last this year
The strike is in direct opposition to a pay freeze for 2021. The CWU note that management have only offered a 2% pay rise from 1st April 2022, alongside a £250 one-off lump sum payment (adjusted to pro-rata for part-time employees).
The 2022 offer is exceptionally poor according to the CWU, particularly on top of a pay freeze, and must also be viewed in the national context of the RPI already having risen by 8.2% in February to 9% for March, with most economic experts predicting further rises in the coming months.
Being brutally honest, it’s highly likely we will see more strikes as the world has been turned upside down with Brexit, then a pandemic, then a war in Europe and no business can keep up with costs, let alone keep salaries rising in line with inflation. Pay rises are going to be less than desired and Unions will see this as an opportunity to call for strike action in many industries.
Despite this union’s best attempts to avoid strike action, the Post Office has displayed no interest whatsoever in meaningful negotiations. As such, workers have delivered an overwhelming mandate for strike action. The current offer of a mere 2% pay rise over two years is nothing short of an insult to these key workers who provided exemplary services to this nation during the pandemic. As the cost-of-living crisis mounts, working people across the country are facing stark realities. This isn’t any less true of Post Office employees, who deserve far better than the degrading offer currently on the table. Post Office management need to understand that by undervaluing these workers, they have provoked real anger across the country. We urge them to get round the table with us and reach a decent, fair agreement that shows respect for Britain’s key workers who kept Post Offices open for society during the pandemic.– Andy Furey, Assistant Secretary, CWU