Postal workers union says staff concerns are about longer term issues not Friday’s 38% rise in the price of free shares
Royal Mail staff are pushing ahead with plans for strikes in the run up to Christmas as the battle over privatisation intensifies.
The Royal Mail’s 150,000 workers were handed £2,200 worth of free shares as part of the privatisation, handing them at least an £800 instant paper profit on the first day of trading.
Billy Hayes, general secretary of the Communication Workers Union (CWU), said the 38% rise in value would not make “one scintilla of difference” to employees, who are expected to vote for strike action on Wednesday. Staff are prevented from selling their shares for three years.
The union is planning a nationwide strike as early as 23 October – before balloting for further strikes in the run up to Christmas.
“It is likely to be an all-out strike first, then rolling strikes in the run up to Christmas,” a union source told the Guardian.
The union, which represents more than 100,000 postal staff, had wanted to hold the strike – the first since 2009 – before the privatisation but the government started the sell-off sooner than expected. More than 95% of Royal Mail staff were opposed to the privatisation in a consultative ballot earlier this year.
[Royal Mail privateers get thousands of pissed-off posties.]