A World to Win says…
Full support to postal workers!
Down with New Labour!
New Labour and Royal Mail management have hatched a thinly-disguised plot to destroy the Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) in order to impose mass redundancies and intolerable working conditions on those who keep their jobs. The ultimate aim is to sell off Royal Mail to the highest bidder.
Behind the government’s strategy is business secretary Lord Mandelson, who clearly hates the CWU after its campaign against part-privatisation. Mandelson prevented the intervention of ACAS and openly sides with the ludicrously overpaid Royal Mail bosses. He refuses to use state funds to sort out the pensions deficit while the bankers are raking it in thanks to government subsidies.
A leaked document shows that management and the government are not interested in a compromise but want to fatally weaken the CWU. The Royal Mail document dated 24 September boasts of “shareholder support” for the hard-line position - the government is the company’s only shareholder. The secret plan suggests that Royal Mail will effectively “de-recognise” the CWU by denying union reps facilities to carry out their activities. The CWU inexplicably continues to fund New Labour to the tune of £1 million a year but their argument that funding buys “influence” is clearly rubbish. And far from fighting for every job, the CWU leaders actually want the Royal Mail to include them in negotiations about “modernisation” and accept that this will mean fewer staff. Over 40,000 jobs have already gone since 2001 and another 100,000 minimum is what the management want. Even the Tory Daily Telegraph notes that this devastation is comparable to what happened to the miners after the end of the 1984-85 strike.
Like the miners, the postal workers are facing a fight to the finish, not only with management but also with the New Labour government and they had better get ready for it. To succeed, they will need active support, including industrial action, from other trade unionists – especially those in the public sector facing imminent pay cuts and job losses.
- no “modernisation” at the expense of a single job
- occupation of any sorting office/workplace threatened with sackings
- a halt to the commercialisation/privatisation of the mail service
- campaign to bring the postal service under the democratic control of workers and users
- immediate disaffiliation of the CWU from New Labour
- launch a campaign with other unions to show how not-for-profit services benefit the public and how this is the way forward in the midst of a capitalist economic crisis.
21 October 2009