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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 July 2007

Postal workers send a message to Royal Mail

We're striking to win

Postal workers on strike in June 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

Postal workers on strike in June 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

THERE WAS very solid support for the postal workers' strike on 29 June (see reports below).
Trevor Prior from Cambridge, a delivery rep for the Communication Workers' Union (CWU) spoke to the socialist in a personal capacity about the success of the strike.

IT'S BEEN fantastic. The support has been much stronger than I expected. In my office we have 258 CWU members and only nine of them reported for work. Only 19 people worked overall.

Even of the non-members, more than 50% didn't report to work. The public support has been fantastic. I was on the picket line from 3am until 1pm and we had lots of support from members of the public. Local businesses were coming along and asking for leaflets to give out to the public. I really feel we're heading to win the dispute because of this support.

The mainstream media's attitude was all geared around the effect the strike will have on business and how Royal Mail's profits may be affected. But the feeling I got from the picket lines and talking to members of the public and friends and family today, was that they're not falling for Royal Mail's lies about 27% pay claims and us asking for ridiculous deals.

Postal workers on strike in June 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

Postal workers on strike in June 2007, photo Paul Mattsson

The CWU have made it quite clear that should Royal Mail not be prepared to negotiate, we will call further industrial action within the next two weeks. There are rumours of short walkouts which will cause havoc on the network.

I don't think Royal Mail can ignore this. They've tried to break the strike and failed. They tried to convince people to vote 'no' in the strike ballot and failed. I think they were pinning their hopes on a lack of solidarity in the strike action. They've failed miserably because the strike has been solid.

We have rural offices and small town offices around the region where we don't even have a union representative and our union membership is very low. But we've actually had non-members forming picket lines there and zero attendance for work.

The rural offices have always been the weakest link because they haven't seen the changes as affecting them.

But this time they know that their jobs are under threat. They know they are threatened by closures. That's not just in Royal Mail delivery and processing - it's also in post office counters and right across the board.

People have had enough of Royal Mail's slash and burn agenda. I honestly believe that people are ready for a long dispute if that's necessary.

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In The Socialist 5 July 2007:

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National Shop Stewards' Network conference: Join the fightback against the bosses' offensive

Campaign for a New Workers Party

Campaign for a New Workers' Party: Giving workers a voice

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What we think

Unite against war, poverty and terrorism

Postal workers strike

Postal workers: we're striking to win

Postal workers' strike gets solid support across the country

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Under several feet of flood water - after flood defence budget cut

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International socialist news and analysis

Why the United Nations fails the test of internationalism

Iran: Riots over petrol rationing

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