Postal services in Fenland set to suffer along with the rest of UK as union agrees strike

FENLAND postal services look set to suffer major disruption across the UK with workers voting in favour of a national strike in a row over pay, jobs and services. The Communication Workers Union (CWU) said today its members had backed a walkout in opposi

FENLAND postal services look set to suffer major disruption across the UK with workers voting in favour of a national strike in a row over pay, jobs and services.

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) said today its members had backed a walkout in opposition to working changes at Royal Mail. Postal workers are said to have voted 76 per cent in favour of strike action.

A spokesman for the eastern branch of CWU said the action would impact on services at all postal offices.

He said the strike could last 24 or 48 hours and could take place within the next three weeks.


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Dave Ward, CWU deputy general secretary, said: "This is a huge vote of no confidence in Royal Mail management. The company has tried to make out that problems only exist in some local offices, but postal workers across the UK have now spoken and they say no to Royal Mail's arrogance.

"Royal Mail has never really been engaged in modernisation. They've been running down the business, running down services and cutting costs and it's that business plan that postal workers have overwhelmingly rejected today.

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"There's still an opportunity to reach an agreement before any national strike action takes place.

"We need a national agreement which secures a fair deal on modernisation and reward for the efforts of postal workers in transforming the business. We want reassurances on job security, covering both redundancies and full-time part-time ratios."

Royal Mail condemned the national strike calling it "deplorable and irresponsible" and said that the action would "drive customers away from the business and undermine confidence in the entire postal services industry".

Mark Higson, Royal Mail's managing director, said: "It is clearly reprehensible for the union to continue to hold strikes when Royal Mail is not planning any further efficiency changes for the rest of the 2009 calendar year and the priority facing everyone in Royal Mail is to deliver the best possible service to customers in the run up to Christmas. We have held more than 70 meetings with the CWU over the last few months and we call on them now to stop the strikes, get back round the table and talk."

He added: "Every letter is important to us and we apologise unreservedly for the disruption and inconvenience our customers have suffered as a result of the CWU's strikes."

INFORMATION: Are the postal workers right to strike? E-mail your views to: the editor: john.elworthy@archant.co.uk.

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