Sunday, 27 July 2008

Belfast Posties Wildcat Escalates

As we go to press Postal workers wildcat action that started at the Tomb Street depot in Belfast is escalating. Initially deliveries in the north, south and west of the city had all been affected by unofficial action taken by workers as a result of management heavy–handedness and disciplinary action against two posties working in the Shankill area of Belfast. One of whom is believed to have been futher victimised as a result of keeping a diary of harasssment.

The strike has now spread to the Mallusk sorting office, on Friday 3rd of February the vast majority of the night shift joined the wildcat action. This will effect deliveries all over Northern Ireland and is a great boost to the strike.

Management rejected an offer from the striking posties to deliver 11 plus exam results on Saturday 4th of February and immediately reinstate the strike - instead Royal Mail brought in 50 managers to do the deliveries.

So far management have been refusing to enter into negotiations about the dispute as the strike action is illegal. Fra Martin from the Communication Workers' Union said his union did not support what was happening, and that the union have asked the men to go back to work, but Royal Mail needed to talk to the striking workers. Management have promised that any problems will be dealt with through “proper due procedures” on a return to work, as this dispute has kicked off as a result of a lack of faith in those due procedures it is unlikely that that promise sway many of the strikers.

Put simply staff are not prepared to work in an environment "where Royal Mail have been applying a conduct system in which they have no faith". This is not the first time in recent months that management heavy–handedness has resulted in wildcat action at the Tomb Street sorting depot, in fact the depot has a history of militant action going back several years.

Victory to the posties!