8 Days Postal Strikes now expected

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Late yesterday afternoon, the CWU announced the results of a second ballot of Royal Mail workers and this could result in up to 8 days of postal strikes over the next few months.

Four days of strikes have been called, starting next Friday, the 26th of August, and following Monday’s Bank Holiday again on the 29th of August and then the 8th and 9th of September. While no additional strike days have been announced, there are likely to be another four scheduled in the near future.

In the second ballot to enter into formal dispute with management over pay and conditions, CWU postal workers voted by 98.7% on a 72.2% turnout, complementing a 97.6% ‘yes’ vote on a 77% turnout for strike action over pay in July. This is a massive mandate for change at Royal Mail, whether it’s affordable or not.

On offer already is a no strings 2% pay rise bumped to 5.5% if combined to changes to working conditions. The first strike ballot was over getting a much higher no strings pay rise. This led to the first four days of postal strikes being announced.

The second strike ballot regarding working conditions will likely lead to an additional four days of strike action being announced and was confirmation that workers want to keep the terms and conditions they currently work under and are willing to back further industrial action.

The ongoing attempts of Royal Mail Group to whittle away people’s hard-won working conditions will be met with fierce opposition. For far too long now, Royal Mail Group have been trying to pick a fight, treating our members like they are the dirt they walk on.

But Royal Mail Group have completely failed to recognise the strength of feeling that exists against them. In these times, working people need more security on the job, not less, and we won’t be backing down until we secure an acceptable solution for our members.

– Terry Pullinger, Deputy General Secretary, CWU

There’s an important point to note here, many unions cover lost pay due to strike action. The CWU do not – when the postal strikes take place workers lose a day’s pay. 8 days of strikes equates to much more in lost pay than the no strings 2% pay rise on offer. It also comes at a time when the new Energy Price Cap is about to be announced putting further pressure on Postie’s income at a time that inflation and the cost of living is already rising. And yet still only 1.3% voted against further industrial action.

Even if a massive pay rise is negotiated with the CWU, further postal strikes are still likely as they now have two mandates for industrial action and the fight for working conditions will drag on as it’s key to Royal Mail’s modernisation plans. Expect disruption to the postal service to run on for months before the dispute ends.

24 Responses

  1. Bye then. Will use courier instead.

    Any advice on sending large letters through couriers? I don’t send enough (fewer than 20 a week) to qualify for Whistl’s service. And this is where SMALL business (really small, not £5m turnover small) starts to go to the wall. Big “small” businesses will be ok as they pull the ladder up from below them.

    All we want is some STABILITY. Strong and stable, remember that? Haha. Not in this decade I guess.

  2. Now that the strikes are here and happening tomorrow, I thought I’d have a look at the orders being dispatched today, to check what delivery dates ebay and Amazon are advising the buyers.

    On Amazon it was saying 30th to 31st for all of them, sent Royal Mail 48.

    On ebay, it varied. Although the items were also the same method, Royal Mail 48, it was saying on some delivery between 26th to 27th. Yes, somehow RM48 had become possibly next day. Unlikely under normal circumstances and even more unlikely under strike conditions. For others, it was saying 27th to 30th, or 30th to 31st.

    I’ve got the ebay cut-off point set as 2pm, and even now it is past that point in the day, I’ve got orders coming in that they are saying dispatch 26th (not possible, no Royal Mail collection) for delivery 27th to 30th. In reality, any orders placed after Royal Mail pick up today won’t be going out until Tuesday 30th, which will be the next collection. Yet ebay in particular are saying orders will arrrive before that date. They may be offering seller protection, but by giving buyers unrealistic delivery dates, it creates a lot of work for us and disappointed buyers. There will be a lot of “where is my item, it should have been here already?” messages to deal with. All I can think of to reduce that, is to put the stores in holiday mode and advise buyers that way.


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