‘Everyone has to come out now, all the unions have to,’ Communication Workers Union (CWU) Hampstead Delivery Office deputy unit rep John Taylor told News Line yesterday.
‘We have to keep hitting Royal Mail hard, coming out every week on different days.
‘We don’t want seven day breaks.
‘They want a war, we have to give them a war.
‘We’re fighting for our futures.
‘Royal Mail wanted to delay the strikes until after Christmas when we’re weaker.
‘We’re not falling for that again.
‘All the other unions should come out behind us now.
‘They are out to break the CWU.
‘We’re a strong union. If they can break us they can break anybody else.’
Taylor was responding to the decision of the CWU Postal Executive (PE) to confirm, after an over four-hour meeting yesterday, that the three days of strike action, starting today, are on from 4am.
The Postal Executive’s crisis meeting followed two days of talks between Royal Mail and CWU negotiators brokered by TUC general secretary Brendan Barber at Congress House in central London.
Talks continued yesterday morning and broke off without agreement at 1pm for negotiators to travel to report to the Postal Executive being held at CWU head office in Wimbledon.
Negotiators then returned to Congress House where Royal Mail executives were waiting to continue talks and kept in touch with the Postal Executive by telephone.
Rob Bolton, chairman, south central no.1 CWU branch, said: ‘CWU members all across the country will welcome the fact that the strikes are going ahead.
‘We never believed that Royal Mail were going to stop their attacks on our members’ terms and conditions, jobs and pay.
‘Now we can see that these talks were just an attempt by Royal Mail to play for time in order to get over the Christmas period.
‘We must call a national demonstration calling for support from all Trade Unions.
‘Every single worker’s job is under attack and we should be calling for the setting up of a public sector workers alliance to defend jobs, services and pay.
‘Postal workers fight on behalf of all workers in this country.
‘We must force the TUC to call a general strike as the only way to defeat the employers’ offensive that is under way.’
All Trades Union Alliance national secretary Dave Wiltshire told News Line: ‘The strikes have to be escalated now.’
‘It is quite clear there is no compromise possible.
‘This is despite all the efforts of Hayes, Ward and TUC leader Barber to get any form of words acceptable to the membership.
‘Royal Mail have continued to refuse to budge.
‘It’s now set for an all-out war.
‘CWU members must demand that their union mobilises all its forces for a national stoppage to end the attacks obviously inspired by this government.
‘They must call on their allies throughout the public sector, who face precisely the same attacks, to come out behind the CWU and put an end to this government.
‘What we need is a workers government that will bury capitalism and bring in socialism.’