Romford posties are among an estimated 15,000 demonstrating in Westminster today (December 9) as they continue to fight for a better pay and job offer from Royal Mail.

Members of the Communications Workers Union (CWU) have been striking intermittently for months in an ongoing dispute over conditions and pay.

A Royal Mail spokesperson said it has offered workers a pay rise of up to nine per cent, despite it currently losing more than £1 million a day. 

Romford postal workers will be picketing in Westminster today, and CWU Romford assistant branch secretary Dave McPherson said the strikes are going ahead as the union continues to push for three things. 

These are:

  • job security for its members with no compulsory redundancies
  • a fair pay increase in the cost-of-living crisis
  • for Royal Mail to abandon its plans to push back deliveries by three hours and move from a six-day service to five. 

Mr McPherson added that up to 10,000 redundancies nationwide have been indicated as planned in early 2023, with Royal Mail only offering no compulsory redundancies until March 2023. 

In October, Royal Mail said it estimated 5,000 to 6,000 redundancies might be required by the end of August 2023, though the spokesperson said it is too early to say what the impact might be locally.

The Recorder spoke to three local posties ahead of today’s strike, all of whom are concerned about the current negotiations. 

One said: “For me, the whole thing about this is it’s not about pay. It’s about our terms and conditions and how they have basically been ripped up.” 

They added the job security moving forward is what matters most, with the situation making them “very angry and very bitter”. 

Romford Recorder: Romford postal workers at a recent strike in Harold HillRomford postal workers at a recent strike in Harold Hill (Image: Dave McPherson)

Another said "nobody glorifies going on strike. It’s a big, big decision”, adding the situation is a “real worry”. 

"I have got a young family, still got a mortgage.” 

While working for Royal Mail used to feel like a safe job, they said now they don’t know if their jobs are secure anymore.

All three, who between them have nearly 70 years' experience with Royal Mail, were planning on attending the demonstration, with Mr McPherson estimating around 15,000 posties will turn up in Westminster.  

“I want to have a job at the end of the day. I want to go to sleep at night knowing I have got a job,” one said. 

The Royal Mail spokesperson said: "We are proud to have the best pay and conditions in our industry. In an industry dominated by the ‘gig economy’, insecure work, and low pay, our model sets us apart and we want to preserve it.   

“Despite losing more than £1 million a day, we have made a best and final pay offer worth up to 9%. Strike action has already cost our people £1,000 each and is putting more jobs at risk.  

“The money allocated to the pay deal should be going to our people, but it risks being eaten away by the costs of further strike action. 

"We once again urge the CWU to call off strike action. We remain available to meet to discuss our best and final offer.” 

Following Friday, there will be a further planned strike on Sunday (December 11). 

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