We’ll see you in court, say unions as Royal Mail bids to ban strikes
ROYAL MAIL is heading for a courtroom showdown after firebrand union bosses last night vowed to fight its legal bid to halt a strike over pensions and pay.
The company had threatened the Communication Workers’ Union with an injunction to prevent 110,000 staff conducting a wave of strikes in the run-up to Christmas.
But last night union bosses – led by CWU chief Dave Ward, a close ally of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn – said they had a ‘cast-iron’ case.
A union spokesman said: ‘They are just trying to play for time. We feel we have exhausted all the processes.’ Last week, tens of thousands of staff voted in favour of a two-day walkout from October 19, which the company fears will cause a huge backlog at sorting offices. There are also fears that there could be more action before the festive period.
The CWU says it has been left with no alternative to strike action after 18 months of talks in a dispute over pay, working hours and plans to scrap the generous final salary pension scheme.
But Royal Mail, which was privatised four years ago, insists the union failed to exhaust every option at mediation before calling the strike ballot. It is on these grounds that the company is seeking an injunction to halt the walkout.
Sources said that a second strike could target the busy November period, including ‘Black Friday’ sales held by many retailers at the end of the month.
Royal Mail chief executive Moya Greene wants to cut back the wage bill for the company’s 140,000 employees. Sources say that salaries have risen by about 10 per cent over the past four years, and average pay is about £23,000.