Hundreds of postal workers on strike
MORE than 500 postal workers in the region remain on strike today over issues of pay, pensions and changes to conditions.The first 48-hour strike by members of the Communications Workers Union started yesterdayat 12noon and will finish at 12pm tomorrow.
MORE than 500 postal workers in the region remain on strike today over issues of pay, pensions and changes to conditions.
The first 48-hour strike by members of the Communications Workers Union started yesterdayat 12noon and will finish at 12pm tomorrow. Workers are due to be on strike again from 3am on Monday for a further 48 hour period.
It is thought there are 130,000 employees involved in the strike, including several hundred from sites around Suffolk, including Ipswich, Stowmarket and Woodbridge.
More than a dozen postal workers with banners and placards formed a picket line outside Ipswich's town centre site in Commercial Road, and received several beeps of support from passing motorists.
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The dispute is partly over proposed changes to the business under Royal Mail's modernisation plan. The CWU is concerned these changes, which include later start times, later deliveries and the abolition of Sunday collections, will actually take the service backwards.
There are also planned changes to increase the retirement age and reduce pension benefits.
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A CWU Suffolk branch official on the picket line, who did not wished to be named for fear of being singled out, said: “The atmosphere here is pretty buoyant at the moment but it is normally rock bottom at work.
“This is not just about pay, it is about conditions. They want total flexibility from us but that is not family friendly.
“The changes they want mean the first letters people get will be 9am. In rural areas, they would still be getting them delivered at noon.
“They are imposing changes on us without negotiation.”
Talks continue between Royal Mail and the union, but CWU has said the strikes will not be called off until an agreement is reached.
A Royal Mail spokesman said: “We are still talking to the CWU in an attempt to avert the strikes planned by the CWU. We continue to urge the CWU to work with us to modernise the business and to help secure a successful future for the company and its people in the competitive market in which we now operate. Talks are expected to continue.”
n. How have the strikes affected you? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.