LETTER OF THE DAY ‘There’s no need for a Royal Mail strike’

Royal Mail employees are threatening strike action
Royal Mail employees are threatening strike action
Water from the burst main on Havant Road (A3023). Credit: Portsmouth Water via Twitter

Burst water main causes lengthy delays on and off Hayling Island

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Your readers may have read about a potential strike at Royal Mail by the Communications Workers’ Union (CWU).

Our postmen and women have the best pay – and the best terms and conditions – in our industry. They do an amazing job in all weathers – rain or shine.

Average pay is 45-50 per cent above the National Living Wage. None of that is changing. There are just no grounds for a strike.

Previous strikes at Royal Mail meant we let our customers down. Some of our major rivals today were actually established because of those strikes. There really is no point shooting ourselves in the foot.

So, what’s at issue? Well, not the great terms and conditions postmen and women have, as I said before. On pay, we have made a very good offer. That follows a 10.8 per cent pay rise in the four years since privatisation. That compares favourably with the 6.4 per cent UK national average earnings increase over the same period.

On pensions, we know how important pension benefits are to colleagues. Our proposal would be by far the best pension scheme in the industry – and one that benchmarks well to other large employers.

Many of our postmen and women are in a Defined Benefit scheme – 63 per cent, in fact, compared to just 6 per cent of workers across the UK private sector.

We do need to change to a different type of Defined Benefit arrangement. That’s because – every year – it would cost us at least three times more than the cash we generate just to keep the existing pension open. No business could do that.

Royal Mail is a very good employer. We provide great terms and conditions. We are working hard to keep improving our services to customers in a very competitive industry.

There is no need to strike.

We want to work with our postmen and women, our great ambassadors, to keep being the best delivery company in the UK.

Geoff Braden

Royal Mail Regional Operations Director – West