Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/777/17298
Coventry postal workers fight bullying management
A postal worker
Postal workers at Royal Mail's Coventry North Delivery Office went on 24-hour strike on 27 August.
Over 80% of the 200+ workers (members of the Communication Workers' Union, CWU), voted to strike over bullying and workloads. For several months, local management have refused to follow national agreements. They make executive decisions to increase our workloads, regardless of the amount of mail coming into the office.
As a worker on the 'shop floor', it appears to me that the culture of management in Royal Mail today is to encourage managers to be confrontational, even intimidating. Some managers relish every opportunity to show the workforce 'who's boss'.
This is happening in offices up and down the country, as local office managers attempt to curry favour with the higher ups, by showing that they can highlight 'efficiency savings' in the local budget. I guess £400+ million profits this year just isn't enough for some people!
The people at the bottom, the postmen and women, pay the price through stress-related illnesses, physical injuries due to overwork and fatigue, worse terms and conditions and ultimately job cuts, as the privatisation of Royal Mail looms. We as a union need to stand up now, not just locally but nationally, because things will only get worse if Royal Mail is privatised.
All the main parties support some form of privatisation of Royal Mail. But the public have shown, in survey after survey, that they oppose it.
We Royal Mail workers need to take industrial action to stop the attacks locally.
And we also need to take national action against privatising this public service. A special national meeting of CWU reps at the beginning of August agreed to hold a strike ballot against privatisation and to protect jobs and services. This needs to be implemented urgently.
We also need to link up with other workers in other unions who are in dispute, and coordinate any action with them.
We all own Royal Mail at the moment. And we workers are proud to provide a six-day delivery service to 29 million addresses throughout the UK.
We can't let it fall into the hands of a few privateers looking to run the service down in pursuit of a fast buck.
- For a publicly owned postal service, not private profits.
- 4,000 workers in Crown Post Offices continued their strike action over the bank holiday weekend. They were striking over office closures, jobs and pay. There have been nine previous strikes.
More action is likely to follow, including action short of a strike.
In The Socialist 28 August 2013:
Socialist Party news and analysis
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party feature
'Youth Fight for Jobs' campaigning
Socialist Party workplace news
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
Socialist Party reviews