THE CWU is warning that 40,000 jobs will go as a result of increased mechanisation of the Royal Mail system. It is also objecting to a 2.5 per cent pay offer, which is in fact a 2.4 per cent wage cut with inflation running at 4.9 per cent.
On Tuesday we had confirmed for us, by the leak in the Daily Mirror, that Royal Mail intend to terminate the industry’s final salary pensions scheme, as well as savagely cut wages.
It is going to bring in a pension that workers will have to work five extra years to get.
With public support running massively in favour of the postal workers, it was time for the Prime Minister to have his say.
Yesterday, we had confirmed at PMs Question Time in the House of Commons that the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, does not support the demands that the postal workers are making.
He was asked by the local Mount Pleasant, Labour MP, Emily Thornberry to approach Royal Mail to get it to negotiate with the CWU over the union’s wage claim and its defence of postal workers jobs.
Brown replied that he understood about the problems of low paid workers but all pay settlements must be the means by which we tackle inflation.
This means public sector wage rates are to be on a sliding scale downwards as inflation lets rip, plunging working class families into poverty.
Clearly, Brown stands with the bosses and the bankers many of whom, as we know, both make massive, runaway, inflationary profits and pay no taxes at all.
The CWU postal workers’ leaders must now be the only people in the country that believe that it is possible to force the CWU leaders into negotiations with a series of 24 hour strikes.
The truth, as everybody else knows, is that the Royal Mail and the government are only interested in imposing their demands on the CWU.
The bosses and the government are fighting to win while the CWU is going through the motions, sparring instead of fighting, hoping that something will turn up.
The CWU executive is meeting this weekend to discuss what next? with one week of the rolling strikes to go.
Next there must be indefinite strike action by the whole of the CWU to defeat the Royal Mail and the government behind it.
To win this battle the CWU must take the initiative and form a public sector workers alliance.
Since the government is taking the whole of the public sector to the cleaners with its wage cutting, job cutting and privatisation policies, it is obvious that the whole of the public sector must be brought out to defeat the bosses and the government.
All postal workers and all trade unionists must demand indefinite strike action by the CWU and a trade union public sector alliance.
The local branches of the CWU must begin to mobilise the whole of the working class for this struggle.
They must form councils of action in the localities to unite all of the local trade unions and all sections of the community in support of the postal workers.
They must show that support with local strike actions and mass demonstrations demanding a public sector alliance and a general strike to defeat the management and the government.
Defeating the Brown government means bringing it down and going forward to a workers government that will expropriate the bosses and bankers to go forward to socialism.
This is the only way forward.
Forward to indefinite strike action, and strike action by the whole public sector to win the struggle and defeat the Royal Mail management and the Brown government.