Borough postal staff to vote on strike action

CWU general secretary Dave Ward
CWU general secretary Dave Ward

Wigan postal workers are to vote on strikes in a row over post office closures, job cuts and pensions.

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has served notice that around 3,500 of its members in Crown offices, supply chain depots and administration sites across the UK will be balloted in the coming weeks on whether to launch a campaign of industrial action.

“We are repeating our call for the board to resign with immediate effect and be replaced with people who are actually interested in delivering jobs and services through this iconic brand.”

Dave Ward, CWU general secretary

It is the first time workers from the different parts of the business have been balloted together, with the result due on August 19.

The union said the ballot was in protest at the company’s plans for “wholesale privatisation” of the Crown network, job losses and the closure of the defined benefit pension scheme.

CWU general secretary Dave Ward said: “The Post Office as we know it is on the brink of extinction. It is clear that the board’s plan is one of closure, redundancy and cost-cutting on an epic scale which will permanently undermine this great British institution.

“We are repeating our call for the board to resign with immediate effect and be replaced with people who are actually interested in delivering jobs and services through this iconic brand.”

The Post Office said it was disappointed by the ballot decision and called for talks.

A statement said: “The Post Office is committed to maintaining the vital services offered by its branches at the heart of communities across the UK, with 99 per cent of the UK’s population within three miles of a branch. However, this level of service can only be secured for future generations by ensuring financial sustainability.”