Jump to content

Royal Mail strikes are called off


Recommended Posts

The postal strikes have been called off until at least the New Year to allow for fresh talks between Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said the decision had been made to provide "a period of calm" in which the two sides could reach a long-term deal.

He said that meant Royal Mail deliveries would be "free of any disruption" over Christmas.

However Mr Barber said that securing a final deal remained a long way away.

He was speaking after the TUC helped to broker the agreement between the two sides to end the strike action.

The industrial dispute has been over the level of job losses the Royal Mail says are necessary as part of its modernisation plans.

While the CWU accepts that some redundancies are required, the two sides disagree over their extent.

They also disagree over changes to pay and working conditions for Royal Mail staff that remain in their jobs.

'Work hard'

CWU deputy general secretary Dave Ward said the decision to end the strike action had been unanimously agreed by its executive board.

"We can now have a period of calm where we hope we can genuinely take forward modernisation in a way that puts the union at the centre," he said.

Yet he added that the union recognised the forthcoming negotiations would be difficult, saying the dispute had been "bitter".

"It will take exceptional efforts to rebuild trust," he said. "But we will work very hard to ensure that the agreement stays on track."

Royal Mail managing director Mark Higson said he now looked forward "to positive and constructive discussions on the next stage of Royal Mail's modernisation plan".

"I'm delighted for our customers and our people that we've got back to a sensible agreement with the CWU that will allow us to deliver a great Christmas while getting on with the vital talks about the longer term future of Royal Mail," he added.

Legal action

The CWU also confirmed that it was not now pressing ahead with its legal challenge to the Royal Mail over its policy of employing temporary workers to deal with the postal backlog.

It had previously been due to go to the High Court on Friday, accusing Royal Mail of using the temporary staff to try to break the strike, something Royal Mail strongly denied.

Mr Ward also issued a fresh plea for the government to help tackle the Royal Mail's £10bn pension fund deficit, saying that until that problem was dealt with, it would be difficult to overcome the "challenges" ahead.

Although the government owns Royal Mail, it has so far refused to get involved with the pension issue.

'Keep talking'

Business Secretary Lord Mandelson said he welcomed the news that further strikes had been called off.

"It's important that both sides now keep talking about the next phase of modernisation which is vital for the company's future," he said.

"Strikes do nothing to help Royal Mail, its business, its future prospects and of course the jobs and livelihoods of those who work in Royal Mail."

Until the latest announcements, CWU members had held five 24-hour strikes over the past two weeks, which involved members in different roles striking on different days.

The strikes that had been planned for Friday and Monday were to be all-out action involving up to 121,000 union members on each day.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 8
  • Created
  • Last Reply

As an employee I would say im glad the strikes are off.For everybodys sake.What has been sad about this dispute is posties have been slagged off in the media yet they are being guided by a useless union that still thinks its 1968,whilst being dictated to by a management that have an "our way or the highway mentality".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We send quite alot of post through the post for the shop which has been a pain in the arse. Good move from the Union to suspend strike action with Christmas coming up, just hope now it can be dealt with behind the scenes without more strike action.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...