Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/314/11632
Postal workers: Treated Like Third-Class Citizens
POSTAL WORKERS, members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU) who work for Royal Mail, are being balloted for strike action against low pay and threats of 30,000 job losses.
Like many CWU members, GEOFF TREASURE from Northwich is campaigning for a 'yes' vote. Geoff explains why the pressure is growing for Royal Mail workers.
WORKING FOR Royal Mail is getting worse by the minute. We have ex-postal workers who are now managers telling us we should be working harder, even though when they were on the post they worked half as hard as we do now.
The school holidays have finished and massive amounts of junk mail, catalogues, holiday brochures are coming through on top of the bills, Sky magazines and leaflets we deliver day after day.
We're drained. But when we say we don't want to work overtime, managers treat us like we're third class citizens.
Yet our union has agreed to increase the delivery span to three and a half hours. This may not sound like a lot but when there are no toilet facilities on our rounds or water bottles on our bikes it's going to cause big problems.
The increase in delivery time means more calls, more mail and more time out in all weathers.
Royal Mail won't provide safe drop-off points for our pouches now - what will it be like when we have more pouches?
Your mail is not safe and Royal Mail won't pay for secure boxes to house the pouches. But it will pay £57,000 (on top of his fat cat salary) to chief executive Adam Crozier as a bonus for working two months.
They cannot get their priorities right and even though chairman Allan Leighton says we're the company's best assets, he won't pay us a decent wage. We feel we are going the same way as the firefighters, strung along then dumped on.
We don't want 30,000 job losses, we want the company and the government to invest in the people who are out in all weathers six days a week for a pittance.
Enough is enough, industrial action is our only chance to get some sort of decent pay rise. We will still be below the European decency threshold.
The government should be ashamed for how they're treating the people they're supposed to represent. It's time to kick New Labour into touch.
In The Socialist 13 September 2003: