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From The Socialist newspaper, 3 May 2002

Fighting low pay and privatisation

Support The Postal Workers

POST OFFICE bosses have reneged on the pay agreement reached in early April with the Communication Workers' Union (CWU). They are trying to impose unacceptable conditions before they sign off the deal.

Bill Mullins, Socialist Party industrial organiser

They want the postal workers not only to carry huge bags of junk mail on their rounds but they want them to work without a break for four or more hours at a time, before going back to collect more mail.


Dave, a Brighton postal worker, told The Socialist:

"The two-year pay deal meant our minimum wage would have reached 300 per week by next year. But the bosses are demanding their pound of flesh. They want to abolish the second delivery and deny us proper meal breaks. At the moment we return to the depot after two hours.

"We have a break then continue the second delivery. Now in complete opposition to all health and safety rules, the bosses' want to stop this break and keep us out on the streets."


This is a deliberate attempt by the management to prepare the service for privatisation, they don't care about the 40,000 jobs under threat. How many managers are ready to line their own pockets by setting up delivery companies and bidding for the work? This is what happened to the railways when dozens of managers secretly negotiated to take over their bit of the system.

Ex British Rail manager Giles Fernley sold his share of the Southend to London line for 6.3 million to National Express whilst Brian Scott of Great Western made 7 million on his 40,000 investment when the company was sold to FirstGroup recently.

Many postal managers must be rubbing their hands at the prospect of doing the same thing.

Tony Blair and the government are privatisation mad. They are handing over huge tracts of the public services to private companies. Don't let them sell off the post office. The fight for decent wages without strings is part of the fight against privatisation.

The Socialist says:

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Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 3 May 2002:

Health, education, transport: Five years of failure

Support The Postal Workers

Mass protests in France: Neither the 'Fascist' nor the 'Crook'

Falklands/Malvinas 1982: Thatcher's War Of Saving Face

A Shift To The Far Right In Europe?

Mass Action And Socialism To Fight The Fascist Threat

Israel/Palestine: The War Of Occupation Continues

Socialist Challenge in Irish Election

Argentine crisis: Taking To The Streets Against The IMF


 

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Related links:

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triangleStop Royal Mail's profit-driven plans to force postal workers to share vans

trianglePostal workers' action results in double victory for union

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triangleJustice for Mohamud Hassan!

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Post Office:

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