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Royal Mail strike could see Christmas delivery disruption

CHRISTMAS deliveries in Inverclyde will be disrupted by a fresh round of strikes by postal workers.

Royal Mail workers across the country will be going on strike for a further 19 days between October and the start of December as a dispute over pay escalates.

Workers walked out of the Knowe Road sorting office last Friday, Pictured, and are poised for more industrial action over the coming weeks.

Craig Anderson, Scottish regional secretary for the Communication Workers’ Union, says that deliveries for so-called Black Friday, falling on November 25, and ‘Cyber Monday’, taking place on November 28, will be affected.

Mr Anderson, from Inverkip, said: “There will be disruption to the people in Inverclyde.

“We hope that people understand we have been forced into this position.

“The reason we have announced this second round of strikes is because of Royal Mail.

“Over the last months communication has got worse.

“The last thing we want to do is go on strike, but Royal Mail have made it clear what their intentions are.”

Royal Mail have confirmed that they have received notice of strike action for October 13, 20, 25 and November 28.

The union say senior management have withdrawn from major national agreements and are damaging workers’ terms and conditions.

Some union members fear that bosses are aiming to sell off parts of the company, that pension pots could be targeted, or that sorting offices could become franchised.

Mr Anderson added: “Members are furious.

“They feel their jobs are under attack.

“CWU met with bosses of Royal Mail last week under the guise that they would enter talks through the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas).

“During that meeting, we were informed of potential changes to the way the union is recognised and how this could affect workers.

“The strikes have now not just become strikes about pay but have become a fight for jobs and for the continuation of services that are vital to communities.

“Royal Mail’s plans are nothing but a smash and grab that could make services worse in the coming years.

“We hope to get support from the public because if we don’t and changes go ahead, then services as we know it might cease to exist.”

But according to Royal Mail the strikes ‘threaten the long-term job security’ of postal workers.

A Royal Mail spokesperson said: “On September 22, Royal Mail invited CWU to enter into talks through Acas to find a resolution to our dispute on change and pay.

“Rather than responding to our offer of Acas talks, the CWU announced further damaging industrial action, once again taking the path of prolonging disruption over resolution.

“Royal Mail is losing £1 million a day and must change faster in response to changing customer demands.

“We operate in a competitive market, and our customers have choices.

“Further strikes and resistance to transformation by CWU will only make our financial position worse, and threatens the long-term job security of our postmen and women.

“The CWU has a responsibility to recognise the reality of the situation Royal Mail faces as a business and engage urgently on the changes required.

“We apologise to our customers for the inconvenience the CWU’s continued strike action will cause. We are doing all we can to minimise any delays and keep people, businesses and the country connected.”

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