Burnham-On-Sea Royal Mail workers will strike again today (Thursday October 20th) as part a long-running dispute over pay and working conditions.

Staff represented by the Communication Workers Union (CWU) are holding 19 days of action across October and November.

The walkouts across the country have already caused disruption to postal services, including in Burnham-On-Sea, with the potential for strikes to continue into the festive period.

Today’s nationwide Royal Mail strike involving all CWU workers will see workers hold a picket line outside the Burnham-On-Sea Royal Mail sorting office.

This will be followed by other large-scale walkouts on Tuesday 25th October and Monday 28th November.

A series of smaller Royal Mail strikes is also being planned by various groups and teams represented by the union on dates in November and December.

The union said that in recent weeks, relations between workers and the employer have deteriorated, with Royal Mail serving legal notice that it was withdrawing from existing agreements with the CWU, as well as threatening to cut 10,000 jobs following strike action last week.

CWU general secretary Dave Ward said: “Instead of sitting down and sorting out his problems like an adult, Simon Thompson chose to be a vanishing act instead.”

“When someone like him earns £62,750 a month and can give himself six-figure bonuses, it is a disgrace that he sees it fit to disrespect our members in such a way.”

“Simon can’t dodge the reality that a mood of rebellion is sweeping postal workers who won’t accept Thompson’s hostile and bizarre behaviour.”

“Postal workers go above and beyond every day and they deserve to be treated with dignity and respect. We won’t be backing down until we get just that.”

A Royal Mail spokesperson said: “On Friday, 14 October, we announced losses of £219 million in the first half of the year.”

“This once again demonstrates the urgent need for Royal Mail to change. Further strike action would materially increase our losses for the full year and may necessitate further operational restructuring and job losses.”

“Four weeks have passed since we invited the CWU to enter talks with Acas to resolve the change and pay dispute. We once again urge the CWU to join us in Acas talks.”

“This is the only way to reach a resolution and secure Royal Mail’s future and jobs for our people. We apologise to our customers for the inconvenience the CWU’s continued strike action will cause. We are doing all we can to minimise delays and keep people, businesses and the country connected.”

The strike action is due to take place on the dates below:

Processing, distribution, international, collections and admin workers: Thursday 3, Wednesday 9, Tuesday 15, Thursday 24 November and Thursday 1 December
Delivery workers: Friday 4, Thursday 10, Wednesday 16, Friday 25 November and Friday 2 December
Network workers: Wednesday 2, Tuesday 8, Monday 14, Wednesday 23 and Wednesday 30 November

The final day of industrial action is currently scheduled for Friday 2 December but more strike dates further into the Christmas period are possible.

While it is possible that strike-induced delays may have resolved by late December, it is advisable to post Christmas presents well in advance this year.

A Royal Mail source recommended posting parcels two or three days earlier than usual ahead of dates when industrial action is planned.

The union said its planned strikes will have a “dramatic impact,” covering peak mail periods such as Black Friday on 25th November, Cyber Monday on 28th November and the Christmas build-up.

Royal Mail, which has a full, in-depth list of FAQs which you can find here, advises its customers to: Post items as early as possible in advance of the strike dates;  Continue to post items at post boxes or post offices, but be aware collections will be less frequent on days when strike action is taking place.

Despite “well-developed contingency plans”, Royal Mail has acknowledged that these “cannot fully replace the daily efforts of its frontline workforce,” with significant disruption on strike dates.

The most significant effect is that Royal Mail will not be delivering any letters on these days, except for those sent by Special Delivery, while Special Delivery parcels are also being prioritised.

Royal Mail has also promised to “prioritise the delivery of Covid test kits and medical prescriptions wherever possible” when strikes are taking place, alongside other Tracked24 parcels.

Any items posted in postboxes or Post Offices the day before, during or following strike dates are likely to be subject to delays. Postal deliveries – and collections from businesses, post offices and post boxes – should resume the day after each strike takes place.


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