Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/244/24882
Fight the Post Office sell off
Protest Against Privatisation
NEW LABOUR'S fixation with privatisation knows no limits. Our postal services are next for the 'fat cat' treatment. Tony Blair and the postal regulator want all business mail to be open to private companies.
Gary Clark, Communication Workers' Union (CWU) Scotland No2 branch.
But this fight is not just about postal workers. It's a fight for all of us. The back door privatisation must be stopped. This will not be achieved through an appeal to common sense but through industrial action. Tube drivers in London have just shown that industrial action gets results.
When the European Commission passed laws to 'liberalise' (privatise) the European market, this was limited to only 10% of the German and Dutch markets because of fear of a backlash by the trade unions.
New Labour is prepared to let the privateers, mostly anti-union companies, wreck the postal service. If they get away with this, the first to go will be the universal cost of sending a letter first class. Big business will concentrate on the most profitable areas and to hell with the rest of us.
Companies like Securicor, Hays, UPS and TNT are rubbing their hands at the thought of millions of pounds of profit. The Post Office will have to compete with these companies which can exploit the profitable parts of the market, whilst still having a legal obligation to deliver to every home in Britain every day.
The new Tailored Delivery Service is linked to the end of the second delivery, except if you are a business customer where you could receive three deliveries a day. If you are only a residential customer you will get one delivery, in the afternoon.
This would mean a new four-hour delivery span compared to the present two hours and the loss of around 30,000 jobs.
The scheme is being piloted in Edinburgh and the local CWU branch is demanding maximum five-day weeks, more four-day weeks, a move towards more Monday to Friday duties and a 35-hour week.
Let's get organised to stop the private profiteers getting their hands on our post.
- Full support for the CWU demo - the first national trade union demo against New Labour's privatisation plans. All trade unionists, particularly public-sector workers, should attend. UNISON is backing the demo.
- For the postal workers' full pay claim of a £300 minimum for a 35-hour week
- Oppose the privatisation of the post office and all other public services
- For the trade unions to organise a one-day public sector strike against privatisation
"CONSIGNIA CHIEF executives were offered a 10% pay rise on top of their big wages. We'd like to be offered 10%. We were disgusted when we heard about that. It's one rule for them, another for us."
A Yorkshire postal worker
CWU March and Rally,
Saturday 16 March, London.
Assemble in Geraldine Mary Harmsworth Park, St George's Road, London SE1 (next to the Imperial War Museum).
Nearest Tube: Lambeth North and Elephant and Castle.
March leaves 12 noon to rally at Westminster Central Hall.
In The Socialist 8 March 2002: