OVER 97% of members of the CWU (Communication Workers Union) working for Royal Mail, voted ‘YES’ for strike action, it was announced yesterday.
Hundreds of reps waved CWU flags and cheered as the ‘historic’ Royal Mail ballot result was announced after a national reps’ briefing in central London yesterday.
Royal Mail staff voted overwhelmingly in favour of a nationwide strike that will paralyse the service at its most busiest. Although strike dates have yet to be announced, the union has indicated it is considering to choose to target both Black Friday and the Christmas post.
Royal Mail is now facing its first national postal strike in a decade.
Strikes at the privatised postal service were averted last year after Royal Mail agreed to raise pay, reform pensions and reduce weekly working hours from 39 to 35 by 2022, subject to productivity improvements.
However, the CWU insisted that the deal is ‘under threat’ under recently appointed chief executive Rico Black.
At the briefing in Central London CWU general secretary Dave Ward and deputy general secretary postal (DGSP) Terry Pullinger addressed the workers.
Pullinger said: ‘Our members take honour seriously and have voted to fight for that agreement against those who now seek to break up the Great British Postal service in the interest of fast-track profit and greed.
‘Integrity and pride still matter and we will not stand aside and see what we have spent our working lives building destroyed.’
Dave Ward said that the result had been ‘historic’ and warned the company leadership that they ‘cannot face away from it.
‘The workforce has completely rejected the company’s plans to set up a separate parcels business and allow UK postal services and thousands upon thousands of jobs to wither on the vine,’ Ward added, highlighting other issues of grievance, such as increased workload pressure on members, driven by technology.
‘This dispute goes to the heart of everything that is wrong in today’s world of work,’ the general secretary continued, vowing to ‘fight the board’s asset-stripping plans.’