There are fears the UK is heading towards a “General Strike” as Royal Mail workers are preparing to vote on industrial action.
Royal Mail workers will ballot within the next two weeks by the Communication Workers Union (CWU) as union chiefs have slammed the government’s “totally inadequate 2%” pay rise.
As Royal Mail workers are preparing to vote, they are demanding a “no strings, inflation based” pay rise and 115,000 could end up on the picket lines.
Terry Pullinger, CWU deputy general secretary accused the management of Royal Mail of being “insultingly and disrespectfully to key workers.”
However Royal Mail have defended their position and said they have offered the largest pay rise “for many years.”
Pullinger said on Wednesday, “Today we will be serving a notice on Royal Mail Group over a pay claim – our claim for an inflation-based, no-strings pay award.
“The company has imposed a 2% pay award, miles away from where inflation is, totally inadequate.
“Throughout this entire dispute, Royal Mail management have conducted themselves insultingly and disrespectfully to key workers.
“Their conduct, and particularly the imposition of such an aggressive pay offer, has eroded trust among loyal employees.
“Nobody wants to be in this situation, but our members are heroes.
“We will defend ourselves if provoked – and we are convinced we will receive our biggest ever Yes vote for action.”
CWU general-secretary Dave Ward added, “Our members have been treated in a completely undignified manner by the people they make incredible profits for.
“Our members kept this country connected throughout our country’s greatest crisis since World War Two, and many paid the ultimate sacrifice.
“Now, they are being told there’s nothing for them, and they have to accept having less while the mega profits of bosses come first.
“The state of affairs is unjust and unsustainable, and I have no doubt that our 115,000 members will stand strong against it and deliver a historic vote for action.”
A Royal Mail spokesperson said, “We believe there are no grounds for industrial action. We offered a deal worth up to 5.5% for CWU grade colleagues, the biggest increase we have offered for many years, which was rejected by the CWU.
“We have further talks on change with CWU this week. We hope this will ultimately lead to an agreement on the changes required to ensure Royal Mail can grow and remain competitive in a fast-moving industry, securing jobs for the future and retaining our place as the industry leader on pay and terms and conditions.
“We value the work we do with CWU and remain committed to agreeing a deal for tomorrow, not just today.”
It raises further fears that a general strike could take place this summer.
This raises the fears of a general strike in Britain, as binmen and teachers join 50,000 rail workers in the RMT’s mass walkouts today.