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CWU Strike Ballot notice served on Royal Mail

By Chris Dawson September 19, 2019 - 10:00 am

A CWU Strike Ballot notice has been served on Royal Mail. The CWU which the majority of postal workers in the UK are members of, will vote on whether to strike.

The CWU strike ballot papers will be distributed on the 24th of September with the result expected to be declared on the 15th of October. If posties vote to strike, the walkout take place within weeks and threatens to disrupt mail services in the run up to Black Friday and the critical selling season ffor retailers.

The problem, according to the CWU, is since Rico Back took control of the Royal Mail that ‘The Four Pillars’ agreement agreed in 2018 has virtually been ripped up. Senior management who agreed to The Four Pillars have largely been replaced and the dispute covers a proposed break-up of the company, threats to the Universal Service Agreement and the breach of the national agreements.

“This union and it’s membership are in the fight of our lives. We face an assault on our terms, conditions and national agreements like we have never seen before. I am confident our members will stand with the union and delivery a massive yes vote in what is the most important dispute the union has ever had.”
– Terry Pullinger, Deputy General Secretary, CWU

Royal Mail has responded saying that a ballot result for industrial action does not necessarily mean there will be industrial action as there will be a mediation period and the company will continue to engage in dispute resolution. It’s worth remembering that when the last CWU strike ballot resulted in strike action, Royal Mail went to the High Court and won an injunction to delay the strikes from taking place.

Royal Mail will be asking posties to vote ‘no’ in the CWU strike ballot, but being realistic that’s not likely to happen. They say that industrial action – or the threat of it – undermines the trust of Royal Mail customers which makes it harder for Royal Mail to pay for the existing terms and conditions for workers. They are dead right here, with the launch this week of Shipping with Amazon there has never been so much choice in the delivery market. In past years Hermes have been winners and online sellers pretty much consider Royal Mail as having no competition in the letter and large letter market but have plenty of options as parcel size and weight rises.

“Royal Mail is committed to further talks as a matter of urgency. We believe there are no grounds for industrial action. We remain committed to open and constructive engagement with the CWU. We all want a successful and sustainable company that provides good quality jobs, fairness in workloads, and continues delivering a sustainable Universal Service.”
– Royal Mail

  • JIM
    4 weeks ago

    LEMMINGS

    • CB
      4 weeks ago

      Hi Jim.

  • SAM
    4 weeks ago

    We all want a successful and sustainable company that provides good quality jobs (LIE), fairness in workloads (LIE), and continues delivering a sustainable Universal Service.”.
    Last thing Rico the Disaster Black will worry about is the worker bees but that is the same at every Corporate Company these days everything to benefit the few at the top.

    However
    We all know RMG need to actually evolve am afraid it never will to many legacy issues, there has to be some give and and take.

    In the meantime Amazon step up their game again. We have just had another pile of non received (not scanned by the Postman mail today), it costs a fortune.

  • jim
    4 weeks ago

    CWU seem oblivious to that any support they may have
    goes out the window with the cynical use of Christmas , using a major
    religious festival and retail sales quarter, as ransom
    we will hear the same old dribble about maximising their position etc, etc,
    though fail or refuse to understand
    we need to protect our business with alternative delivery companies

  • 4 weeks ago

    An own goal.

    I get that the CWU have issues (quite possibly justifiable) with the way RM is managed. I appreciate that our local posties are hard-working types, although we too have some areas of the country where delivery scans just don’t happen.

    But this gives Amazon Shipping a massive sales boost – if eBay start accepting Amazon tracking numbers, then Royal Mail will lose a lot of eCommerce sellers forever. Whether the strike happens or not becomes irrelevant – we can’t afford the stress and uncertainty of hoping for a last-minute deal.

    • M.lydon
      4 weeks ago

      Best time for a strike as it it shows the public how much they need us and concentrates the bosses minds,when would you like us to strike when there’s no mail

  • 4 weeks ago

    I used to be a postie and if I was still there I would strike. People are being treated like crap and morale is on the floor. Managers are professional bullies and liars, postie’s are asked to meet unrealistic targets, bullied to do overtime or come in when sick, not paid overtime due so office can meet budget and sent out in unroadworthy vans. The whole management is corrupt and it’s only the posties on the streets holding it together.

    • BFT
      4 weeks ago

      So why do they want to ruin my business?

    • Roger
      4 weeks ago

      Don’t forget the ones on the counter at the sorting office, providing surly and unhelpful customer service for limited opening hours, for anyone needing to collect a parcel they missed when they were out, they’re doing their bit too.

    • 4 weeks ago

      @BFT They don’t want to ruin your business, you are really meaningless in all of this and sorry to say, but your just not that important a business to warrant striking over.

      I have always had very good service from the postal workforce but if they start to effect my business I will look for alternative posting arrangements and, should that work out ok, then my RM account will not get used much once they resume work.

    • 3 weeks ago

      @ Steve sharpe I have been aware for a long time that RM along with many big corporation do not value customers.

      I went to the eCommerce show in Olympia today and spoke to the people on the Hermes stand (opposite RM), they will be contacting me again to sort out a contract.

      My customers rely on me delivering on time and I DO value my customers, a strike will impact on my customers service and I can not allow that to happen.

      I did not even bother speaking to the guys @RM

  • Paul
    4 weeks ago

    Royal Mail is a failing company poor management who think that bullying and harassment is the way to get the best from people. They’ve just had a 3pc pay rise to sell there souls to Rico Back and the devil. Shame such a great company going to the wall because of greed.

  • Lee Pearce
    4 weeks ago

    Postage is one of our biggest spends, all our international mail has already moved away from Royal Mail and we got a call from Amazon last week and a rate card that competes with RM, with the threat of strikes coming up, even if my RM account manager comes back with a better price, might as well move the rest of my mail away from Royal Mail.

    I think RM staff need to realise that they might win the battle, but they are going to lose the war!!

    • CB
      4 weeks ago

      Lee, If the Royal Mail staff don’t fight this battle the war is already lost as far as they are concerned.

  • Paul
    4 weeks ago

    Well I hope your business won’t need to use Hermes or Yodel unless you want your important business packets threw over gates left at front doors delivered to a neighbour 3 streets way chucked in gardens left in the rain left were ever necessary to get rid of it. Good luck with that.

  • 4 weeks ago

    This strike is about protecting all employees of royal mail I have worked for the buisness for 30 years and have watched it being slowly destroyed by bad management, bullying , privatisation and people like Rico back trying to break us up whilst being paid millions to do so.
    People forget about the service 99 percent of the public receive and all the postman who care about there job and people they deliver to, you’ll miss us when we are gone.

  • CB
    4 weeks ago

    All you business owners complaining about the damage strikes may have on your business’ and that you plan on moving your custom to other
    carriers is music to the CWU’s ears. Maybe it will be enough for Royal Mail management to see sense, stick to the four pillars agreement and not go back on their word.

    • 4 weeks ago

      CB They either will or they won’t, but that aside, if the CWU keep making these threats of strikes then you may find that business owners like myself will start looking round to see what else is available. Once we move and are happy with a new service, we seldom return.

      I can not afford to wait for you to strike before looking at alternative options

  • Paul
    4 weeks ago

    Totally agree pigs at the trough now.

    • Steven DELANEY
      4 weeks ago

      The CWU doesn’t keep threatening. Royal Mail have gone back on there agreement not the CWU. What exactly do you expect the CWU to do? Royal mail can and should honour the agreement. It was only a year ago. Every board member who signed it has been sacked by the new MD. Nothing the Union have asked for is unaffordable nor unreasonable. Yes it will affect customers…. But royal mail are making money and did agree this.

    • jim
      4 weeks ago

      food for thought
      CWU full time officials wont be on strike pay
      their mortgage will not go unpaid

    • 4 weeks ago

      @Steven DELANEY, not sure that argument works, CWU either threaten to strike or they do not, and the answer is yes they do.

      The reasons for it are another matter and that is between the CWU, posties and Royal Mail.

      The down side is that RM may lose business customers which are hard to get back once they are getting a good service from another company.

      The knock on effect from the above is that business customers are going to be telling everybody else, on forums such as these, how great the service they use is.

      I would be sorry to part company with RM, but if I was to try a company that gave me as good a service as I get from RM I probably would stay with them.

      Strikes are not always the way forward, even the public threat of doing so can lose you business.

  • Jim
    4 weeks ago

    No one will be winner
    Jobs are lost not saved with futile strikes
    striking to save our jobs is a cry often heard
    Wonder how many miners . Are left to Wave that banner?

  • 4 weeks ago

    With Rico Back wanting to break and sell of the company its a real race to the bottom .6 day delivery coming to end next year it’s a big turning point for the staff ,thousands of jobs will be lost its less pay more hours no pension no sick pay no holiday pay .All this at personnel gain for a few directors at the top who are not interested in future of royal mail but to make a quick buck and leave it in a mess .We have seen it in other areas where compaines are asset stripped and left on its knees .there is no need fof this strike company agreed 2 years ago to this deal its them that have broken the agreement its them that need to be accountable Rico Back does not even live in the UK

  • Jill
    4 weeks ago

    So glad you are all shipping out to Amazon. That would be the same Amazon that don’t pay their fair proportion of taxes would it? Learn the background to this proposed dispute then you might have some sympathy with the postal workers. As the wife of a postie, I have watched the way he and his colleagues have been treated over recent years. Almost every decision made seems to be reneged on by the management. As long as they are alright though…..

  • 4 weeks ago

    @Jill I really do not care what Amazon pay to who, they conform to current tax law, if that is a problem then get the law changed. As a postie wife you have a different point of view and interest to sellers.

    I don’t care what problems your husband and friends may have with the CWU, all I care about is my orders being delivered. Much the same as your husband and Co. don’t care about my problems with eBay or Paypal etc.

    • CB
      4 weeks ago

      Maybe people should care a little more about the way the big boys treat the rest of us little people. All the time we fight among our selves over the crap they inflict on us they get away with murder.

    • 4 weeks ago

      @CB Idealism without an answer.

      So how would that work?

    • CB
      4 weeks ago

      Stand up to Rico Back and support the forthcoming strikes would be a start.

    • Jill
      4 weeks ago

      Tyler, on a personal level you’re right, we tend to care about the things close to us. The bigger picture though shows us that you and I are not subject to the same rules and regs as Amazon OR Royal Mail management. They will ride roughshod over those “below”, without a second thought. Our
      Input counts for nothing as Brexit quite clearly shows! X

    • jim
      4 weeks ago

      dont always see eye to eye with TYLER
      though the original comment on this thread is very apt
      r

    • 4 weeks ago

      @CB So you are suggesting that I and other RM stand up to Rico Black by supporting CWU action.

      Will CWU be paying the staffing costs of those businesses? And what will you / they be doing to assist us and stand up to the likes of Amazon, eBay & paypal? Absolutely nothing?

      The real truth is that as these strikes are looking more likely I will look at other couriers to safeguard my business against disruption, in fact, as a director, I have a duty to do the right thing for my shareholder (me). Other larger companies may have a larger shareholder base that they too have to do the right thing by, which is make sure their business is not disrupted. Sole owners will also need to make sure that they protect their livelihood so they can pay bills and feed their family.

      What post workers need to do is up to them, I am not against them doing it but like many others, I will not carry on using RM if that action starts to affect my business.

  • 4 weeks ago

    I will say Amazon make millions and pay no tax but if they payed tax on every item sold work out lot better ,seems lot fairer on them us and the state,
    Through pressure by governments and local pressure from people and ex workers Amazon have arranged to pay there staff a better rate of pay and working conditions including sick and holiday, we are not robots we all have to live and have our relaxing time ,

  • Pete
    3 weeks ago

    As an ex postie I can sympathise with my ex colleagues. When the working week was reduced by one hour we were given extra sorting to do as the computer said this was possible! Every day colleagues would get back late as parcel numbers increased where managers would refuse to pay overtime. You can only move so fast when customers are out and neighbours get fed up with being parcel collection points. I am so pleased to be out of it!

  • 3 weeks ago

    I have worked for Royal Mail for 18 years and seen some horrendous bullying over the years including a postie who was forced out on delivery with the skin hanging off his heels due to blisters, one of many incidents I have witnessed. People who have never worked for Royal Mail shouldn’t judge , Royal Mail keep saying Mail is down and the public believe this but in truth it’s stamped Mail that’s down,I’m still delivering as much if not more mail I did 20 years ago. Maybe getting behind and supporting your postie and Cwu rm will have a better future because believe me Royal Mail do not care about you or the likes of Tyler I know because I see rounds left every week because we are under staffed, it’s about profit not the customer anymore, but keep supporting Rico back and Royal Mail as you know it is finished then you can all complain about the other super couriers!!!

  • Jim
    3 weeks ago

    Do you really think The public gives a hoot
    About Rico or have even heard of him
    Christmas cards are not
    Delivered
    it will be postman pat with his cat that will be in the frame

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