6pm Deliveries Royal Mail strikes red herring

6pm Deliveries Royal Mail strikes red herring

With national Royal Mail postal worker strikes announced yesterday, the company has said it will make them materially loss making this financial year. There’s also a red herring in the news which is that Royal Mail want to change working to have deliveries later in the day meaning letters might not arrive until 6pm in some areas.

The negative commercial impact of any strike action will only make pay rises less affordable and could put jobs at risk. The CWU has a responsibility to recognise the reality of the situation Royal Mail faces as a business, and to engage urgently on the changes required. 

– Royal Mail

6pm Deliveries

On offer was a 2% pay rise backdated to April and a further 3.5% increase is available, subject to agreeing on a series of changes and including a new ‘above and beyond’ bonus. These changes include delivering later in the day.

There are 17 areas across the UK that could see their post delivered by 6pm and a handful that could be waiting until 7.30pm under Royal Mail’s plans. 100 other areas could be waiting until 5pm for parcels and letters to be delivered.

The reason for later deliveries is that it will enable access to next day deliveries and that’s important for a ton of small businesses. Royal Mail need time to collect from businesses later in the day and still get parcels to the destination delivery office before Posties go out on their rounds and currently that’s just not possible. However the CWU are pushing back, pointing out that this means in winter many Posties will still be out delivering in the dark.

Frankly, the CWU hates any changes to working practice and in fairness many Posties love the job because they get up early, get their rounds done and get home early in the afternoon to spend time with their families and who can blame them for loving working hours that they’ve been used to for decades?

The big red herring

The problem is that all this is the big red herring as far as strike action goes. The CWU aren’t in the mood for accepting a pay rise anywhere close to that offered by Royal Mail.

The pay offer is an insult to our members and they are willing to fight for a no strings, real-terms pay rise that they are fully entitled to

– Terry Pullinger, Deputy General Secretary, CWU

Pointing out that we are living in an economic climate where inflation has soared to 11.7%, the CWU point out that pay rises on offer would lead to a dramatic reduction in workers’ living standards. Forget the red herring regarding working hours as the CWU aren’t even on to that yet and will probably hold a second strike ballot to protest at working practices later in the year.

The set of strikes announced yesterday is all about a massive pay rise and the Union wants one in line with inflation. This will be a long hard campaign and we’ll probably still see disruption at Christmas. Start planning now for how you’ll keep your business running.

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Comments

Quite amazing how any small business or sole trader will be able to survive the end of this year with constant postage increases, extreme weather shutting everything down, threats of more covid lockdowns, runaway inflation, unfair competition from Chinese sellers and businesses pretending to be "private" accounts, service metrics designed to punish you, quadruple increase in energy prices by January, a customer base that has never had less disposable income in their pocket and now a post service that doesn't actually want to do the one thing it is designed to do which is deliver the mail! And that is just off the top of my head. The next question is - will RM expect its workers to continue working through clouds of radiation, or will the CWU require its members be provided with their own Geiger counter?

Mike • 10th August 2022 •