trades union congress: no saviours from on high

A piece by Clifford Biddulph, part of a debate on the TUC

When the Communication Workers’ Union executive unanimously called off the postal strike on the government’s terms without an agreement,  the continuing success of the employer’s neoliberal offensive  was due in no small measure to the behind the scenes role of Brendan Barber and the Trades Union Congress. Barber had previously played a part in encouraging the CWU leadership to accept the ‘modernisation’ – or neo liberal – agenda in principle. The leader of the TUC was not acting as an advocate of the trade union movement or the interests of workers but as a servant of the state. Tony Blair once described the leader of the TUC as a government colleague. Continue reading “trades union congress: no saviours from on high”

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post strikes suspended: this deal is no deal! resume action!

by Joe Thorne

CWU Letter to Branches including text of final agreement with Royal Mail (large PDF)

At the top of the CWU-Royal Mail agreement is a header. “Final Draft – 5 November 2009 —- 1.10AM”.  This innocuous line is emblematic of the CWU negotiating team’s strategy: it indicates that the text was agreed more than 7 hours after the strikes were called off.  What sort of negotiation strategy is this – to abandon the bargaining power represented in industrial action, on the promise of a deal yet to be finalised?

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Continue reading “post strikes suspended: this deal is no deal! resume action!”

let’s form postcode gangs!

By Joe Thorne

No, not the postcode gangs that generate periodic moral panics in the mainstream media.  We need a new sort of postcode gang: made up of workers and activists who visit the picket lines set up by postal workers as part of their ongoing strikes against cuts in Royal Mail.  The next strikes are on Friday 6th and Monday 9th November. Why not take half an hour to go down your local picket line (there is a delivery office for each postcode), find a little out about the dispute and show some solidarity?

To find out where to go, check out the Next Strikes page on www.supporttheposties.net

PostStrikeCovPA_468x319 Continue reading “let’s form postcode gangs!”

bulletin for post strike: no deal, crozier

A bulletin for postal workers: click here for PDF. Print some off and take them down to your local picket line (or if not, visit your local picket line and show your solidarity anyway…).  If you live in Stoke, Stockport or Plymouth, you might want to go down to the picket line at one of the three MDEC centres that are on strike tomorrow (Friday).  On Saturday, from between 6am and 10.30am, visit the picket line at your local delivery office.   That’s the place you might have been to pick up a parcel if it couldn’t be delivered.  If you aren’t sure where it is, call 08457 740740 (a Royal Mail helpline) and say you’d like to know where your delivery office is (perhaps you need to pick up a parcel, but lost the calling card).

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– Management are feeling the heat

– Public support is on our side

– Step up the strikes: don’t break action for talks Continue reading “bulletin for post strike: no deal, crozier”

royal mail management strategy for defeating strike

Below appear a series of slides from a Royal Mail management strategy document for dealing with the national strike. These amply display the bosses’ craven lack of ‘good faith’ and feckless disdain their employees and the postal service itself. These slides first appeared in Socialist Worker.

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If you cannot read the text of the images properly, download the PDF here. Continue reading “royal mail management strategy for defeating strike”

a letter from a postman

A Royal Mail worker describes the background to the 2009 national strike vote, including details of how managers have been manipulating the figures to justify cuts.

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Old people still write letters the old-fashioned way: by hand, with a biro, folding up the letter into an envelope, writing the address on the front before adding the stamp. Mostly they don’t have email, and while they often have a mobile phone – bought by the family ‘just in case’ – they usually have no idea how to send a text. So Peter Mandelson wasn’t referring to them when he went on TV in May to press for the part-privatisation of the Royal Mail, saying that figures were down due to competition from emails and texts. Continue reading “a letter from a postman”

support the postal strikes!

Tens of thousands of Royal Mail workers will be staging 24 hour strikes over the next two days.  We would encourage anyone who is able to visit picket lines, and talk to workers, as well as looking to set up local strike support groups.

First, from midnight tonight, workers will begin strikes in Mail Centres – the fifty or so large sorting and distribution depots around the country.  Then, from early Friday morning workers in Delivery Offices will be on strike (except where Delivery Offices are based in Mail Centres, in which case they will be out at the same time as Mail Centre staff).  Your local delivery office is where you may have been to pick up a parcel if it could not be delivered.  If you do not know where it is, Royal Mail provides a service you can use to find out: call 08457 740 740.

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Continue reading “support the postal strikes!”