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Royal Mail to strike?

Old 10-18-09, 11:46 PM
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Royal Mail to strike?

Last-ditch post strike talks due

Last-ditch talks aimed at halting planned strikes by postal workers are due to be held on Monday.

They come after the Communication Workers Union attacked Royal Mail's decision to hire up to 30,000 temporary workers as "a stupid move".

Management said the extra workers would cut the impact of "unjustified and irresponsible" industrial action.

The CWU has called nationwide 24-hour strikes on Thursday and Friday over pay, conditions and postal reforms.

Royal Mail would usually only hire 15,000 temporary Christmas staff.

The extra workers will deal with the backlog caused by the strikes as well as helping with the Christmas rush.

Employing extra people to do the work of staff who are on strike is illegal under employment law.

Royal Mail said the recruitment drive was not about bringing in workers to do the work of striking staff, but to ensure there were enough staff to clear any backlogs between walkouts, as well as tackle the seasonal increase in mail volume.

CWU General Secretary Billy Hayes welcomed Lord Mandelson's suggestion of the use of the conciliation service Acas.

He stopped short of describing the extra temporary workers as strike-breakers.

He said: "What I'd sooner Royal Mail be doing is negotiating seriously about trying to find a resolution to this dispute."

But the government has warned the CWU to bear in mind that there are alternatives to the postal system.

"Technology is providing new ways of communicating," City minister Lord Myners said.

TNT trials

Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg told the BBC: "I think the people who are calling for a strike are wrong, which isn't to say they don't have legitimate concerns. But taking the whole country hostage like this is the wrong thing to do."

Meanwhile, the chief executive of the UK's largest private mail firm has said that he wants to deploy his own postal workers on the streets if the stoppage goes ahead, according to the Guardian.

The newspaper quotes Nick Wells of TNT Mail UK as saying that it would be a "massive challenge" but his company could do the job.

It has completed trial runs in Liverpool, Manchester and Glasgow.

He added that "the reality is we have the customers, appetite and resources".
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8313623.stm
Well, how serious is this? It's like the USPS striking over there?
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Old 10-19-09, 12:17 AM
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Re: Royal Mail to strike?

This is fairly common. Most recently they went on strike in 2007. I'm currently listening to some Ricky Gervais radio shows from late 2003 and they mentioned the wildcat postal strikes that were going on then.
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