CWU – Press Realease:
CWU to launch strike ballot over Post Office privatisation
Union will ballot all Post Office members to â€œdefend the future of great British institutionâ€
Today (Tuesday) the Post Office board has announced the privatisation of a further 20 Crown Post Offices bringing around 175 job losses. This comes on top of a series of recent announcements including:
Â· Significant job losses across the whole business (now totalling 2,000 since the beginning of the year) â€“ in Crown post offices, Supply Chain and Admin. This will lead to compulsory redundancies;
Â· The privatisation (franchise) of 41 Crown post offices announced at the beginning of the year;
Â· The closure of the defined benefit (DB) pension scheme which will leave thousands of staff worse off in retirement (proposed to be closed from September 2016 affected 3,600 people);
Â· A strategy that will lead to the wholesale privatisation of the Crown Office network;
Â· The closure of over half of the Post Office cash handling operation, whilst exiting the external market (announced April 2016).
Dave Ward, general secretary of the CWU, said: â€œWe face the most serious situation in the history of the Post Office. Taken together, recent announcements from the board demonstrate there is no viable plan to secure the future of our membersâ€™ jobs or this great British institution. The board should hang their heads in shame and we reiterate our call for them to resign with immediate effect.
â€œThe role of the Government in this crisis must also be highlighted. We are meeting Sajid Javid the Business Secretary who is responsible for the Post Office early next week and will make it absolutely clear that we will not sit back and see another British institution go the same way as the steel industry. We will press him to hold a summit meeting of all stakeholders to consider an alternative strategy for the future of the company.
â€œWe are left with no choice but to defend the jobs and pensions of our members and the services they provide. Plans to instigate a national industrial action ballot of our whole Post Office membership are now underway.â€
CWU will announce a ballot timetable shortly which will cover 3,500 people working across the Post Office.