Christmas postal strikes are looming as the Communication Workers Union accuses Royal Mail of ‘gross mismanagement’.
It was announced on Wednesday that talks would continue to avert proposed industrial action, which is scheduled to begin on November 24.
The privatised service is offering a 9 per cent pay increase over two years.
But the CWU now, while recognising “progress” in talks, warns that negotiations have collapsed after Royal Mail refused to put any commitments in writing.
Its members now look set to go through with strikes planned for Thursday 24th November, Friday 25th November, Wednesday 30th November and Thursday 1st December.
CWU General Secretary Dave Ward said: “No business making record profits of £758 million in May this year should not be losing over £1 million a day in a matter of weeks without gross mismanagement.
“The truth is that the current senior leadership of Royal Mail have been treating employees, union representatives or future investors with a lack of integrity and transparency.
“Dramatic errors of judgement have been made, like announcing 10,000 job losses to threaten striking workers, abandoning previous agreements and handing over £567 million to shareholders while neglecting the pay of employees who generated that profit.
“Many things remain unexplained, like giving up Royal Mail’s household name in favour of ‘International Distributions Services’, refusing the union’s offer to escalate negotiations and ignoring the unrivalled network of Royal Mail Group to create new financial opportunities.
“We firmly believe these reckless decisions have been informed by power struggles in the boardroom, in the full knowledge of a potential future takeover bid – backed up by the government’s green-lighting of VESA to increase their shareholding.
“Postal workers need a deal that works for them, the communities they love and the industry they loyally serve, not one that covers up for CEO and boardroom failures.
“The CWU – or this country – will never accept Royal Mail becoming another Uber-style gig economy courier.
“32 million households and countless small businesses are relying on this dispute to be over for the Christmas period. The pattern of behaviour displayed by Royal Mail top brass suggests they couldn’t care less about resolving any of this.”
A Royal Mail spokesperson said: “On 7 November 2022, we entered intensive talks with the CWU to reach an agreement on the current pay and change dispute. The talks, which had been scheduled to conclude on 15 November, are continuing to allow more time for a resolution to be reached.
“But time is tight given the notified strikes starting on 24 November. If these strikes go ahead, they will cause more damage to the business and make our improved 9% pay offer over two years less affordable.”
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