NATIONAL STRIKE IS VITAL – say CWU pickets

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Hampstead CWU pickets on Saturday morning were confident of winning
Hampstead CWU pickets on Saturday morning were confident of winning

Post workers were out on strike again on Saturday in defence of their jobs, working conditions, pensions and pay.

The Communication Workers Union branded Royal Mail’s business approach ‘chaos management’.

Thousands of postal workers from Bristol, Cambridge, Edinburgh, London, Middlesbrough and other offices have been striking as Royal Mail continues pushing through panic cuts with ‘an aggressive bullying approach’, said the CWU.

On Saturday Royal Mail delivery offices were out in Anstruther, Bognor Regis, Coventry, Greater Manchester, Hadfield, Leamington Spa, Lochelly, Middlesbrough, Newport Isle of Wight and all London postal districts.

At Hampstead Delivery Office, north west London, CWU Unit rep John Cotier told News Line: ‘We’re out again today.

‘Management are doing away with the night duties from 7th September.

‘This has made staff more angry.

‘Yet again, it means further decimation of the postal service.

‘We will be marching on Unite’s offices in Holburn on Thursday.

‘We are disgusted that Unite is taking no action to stop their manager members scabbing on our members.

‘At one point, Unite wanted to join forces with us. We told them that when they stopped their managers scabbing and doing postmen’s work, we would consider a joint venture between the unions.

‘All the offices in northwest London have been the victims of bully boy tactics brought in by a manager who had success in the west London area.

‘He tried to implement the same tactics in the north west London area.

‘That resulted in total chaos – staff being given EVR (early voluntary redundancy) and then realising there wasn’t sufficient staff to do the work.

‘As a result of all these grandiose schemes, the manager has been moved sideways.

‘We’re looking forward to the national strike. It is vital to win our struggle.

‘We need a public sector alliance to defeat all the privatisation.

‘All privatisation has resulted in disaster.’

Hampstead CWU member Sadik Sllamniku said: ‘I was sacked but they brought me back after the union had discussions with management.

‘We need a trade union to protect our jobs.

‘Royal Mail are trying to get rid of the union.

‘I was given a contract for six months. After that I was told that I was permanent.

‘When they sacked me after 18 months they told me I was on a fixed-term contract.

‘This strike is important – for our rights, for everything.

‘We’re defending our jobs and our conditions of work.

‘The national strike will help us.’

There was a lively picket at N4 Delivery Office.

Frank, a cwu rep was explaining that this strike is different from 2007: ‘They’re bringing in new practices. Modernisation is savage and is detrimental to the public.

‘Always when the boss wants something done it’s down to modernisation. The managers are scared to tell the bosses what’s really happening.

‘I think we can win. We need national action – Brown is a dead man walking.’

Mark Dolan, North London cwu rep went on to say: ‘The strike is solid. We have to have national action.

‘What’s significant is that they were sending managers down from round the country but that’s dried up because more offices are coming out on strike.

‘Lots of the caller’s centres (where people collect their mail) are closed because of lack of management.

‘There should be a public sector alliance. Unite are doing nothing to stop their members crossing picket lines. There will be a protest outside Unite head office on Thursday at 11.30am.’