CWU LONDON DIVISIONAL COMMITTEE
FACT CHECK ON ROYAL MAIL AND OTHER FALSE ALLEGATIONS
Over the last few weeks there has been a number of false and inaccurate statements put out by Royal Mail.
In addition, there has been a number of posts from the usual anti-union individuals on social media.
The following bulletin puts the record straight. Gives you the facts. Not the spin.
Fact 1- Royal Mail now hires an actress to make their media announcements. The actress, on behalf of Royal Mail, claims that Royal Mail has made a 3 year pay offer to the union.
Fact check -The fact is that there is no detail given to the CWU of any offer. Royal Mail has communicated that it is would be prepared to make a 3 year pay offer but could not fund the shorter working week. They are saying that they will continue with their intentions of imposing revisions and changes onto the workforce.
Fact 2 -Royal Mail’s announcement also states that the company is no longer prepared to agree to a reduction in the shorter working week – the agreement that we have to reduce our hours from 38 hours to 37 hours – Royal Mail said that this would cost them £100 million.
Fact check -This announcement confirmed that Royal Mail was now going to break the pay deal element of the Four Pillars Agreement. The only reason the CWU agreed to a 2% pay increase last April 2019 was that anything above inflation would contribute to funding the shorter working week.
Additionally, there is no way the one-hour reduction cost the business £100 million as a significant amount of that would be absorbed, apart from the part timers 2.6% pay increase.
Lastly, if the shorter working week is worth 2.6% and Royal Mail say they cannot afford it, one can only wonder what they intend to offer on pay?
Fact 3 -Royal Mail have communicated via social media that the CWU are responsible for the fall in the share price and a new profits warning.
Fact check -Simply not true. Between April 2018 and June 2019, the Royal Mail share price hit a high of £6.31 and was looking good for all members who had held their free shares as in the October of 2018 they would be entitled to cash them in tax free.
Ricco Back, the new CEO, then decided to issue a profit warning and virtually overnight the share price plummeted to £3.45.
The share price on 6 February had reduced to £1.70 so under Ricco’s tenure the share price had gone from £6.31 to £1.70, no wonder he wants to blame the CWU but the truth is that it happened under his watch.
Fact 4 -Royal Mail claim that they had to push forward by Executive Action, their new strategy as it was behind with their transformation plan time line.
Fact check -Nothing could be further from the truth.
The initiatives that Royal Mail’s strategy is dependent on are flawed.
(a) The Delivery Method trials were a complete disaster at the lightest time of the year. In Stoke Newington’s case the Delivery Office Manager had to ask the staff to cease the trial on a regular basis so as not to fail the work.
(b) AHDC (Automated Hours Data Capture) which is the computerised signing in and out attendance sheet was inconclusive as a concept and totally unacceptable, especially as they want to link it to the hours postal workers are paid.
(c) Resource Scheduler was such a disaster as a resourcing tool that Royal Mail had to demand that the software company had to resolve the issues which meant any resourcing output made no sense. The CWU believe that Resource Scheduler is still a flawed resourcing tool but once again Royal Mail has spent so much money on trying to get it to work, they simply don’t want to accept that it simply is unworkable.
(d) Royal Mail have imposed their parcel separation trial on both Swindon and Crewe. In Swindon we have seen in one case a walking post person having four large parcels taken off their walks and then to be given an extra 150 addresses to sort and deliver which added an extra 8,000 steps to the post worker’s duty. This parcel separation strategy has clearly not been well thought out.
Fact 5 -Royal Mail claim that postal workers are not productive enough.
Fact check -The truth is that productivity went up in Royal Mail by 2.2% in the period leading up to September 2019 and is anticipated to have improved by 1.5% for the whole of 2019/2020. This is in spite of the CWU’s embargo on agreeing revisions and letter decline.
Fact 6 -Royal Mail claim they are up for unconditional talks.
Fact check -However, they insist that they need to continue to impose revisions and trials on offices.
The CWU had offered Royal Mail a period of calm up to the end of February. Royal Mail turned this down and decided to take executive action. The CWU remain open to negotiations but Royal Mail must stop imposing change.
Fact 7 -Royal Mail have claimed that the CWU is opposed to any change.
Fact check -This is complete rubbish. No trade union has seen as much change or agreed as much change as the CWU.
This change has included the removal of the second delivery, the creation of a uni- grade, a 50% reduction in Mail Centres and RDCs, amalgamation of Delivery Offices and the ending of both the final salary and CARE pension schemes.
The CWU’s position has always been about shaping and agreeing change rather than Royal Mail imposing change.
Fact 8 -Some of the usual suspects with an anti-union agenda have been attempting to mislead people into believing that the CWU’s use of social media would lead to the industrial action ballot being challenged.
Fact check -Again this is completely false. The reason why the High Court and Court of Appeal awarded Royal Mail the injunction was that the CWU had tried to change the 1992 Trade Union Act.
The 1992 Trade Union Act replaced the right for industrial action ballots to be conducted in the workplace and that ballot papers had to be sent to home addresses.
The CWU will be encouraging all CWU members to vote in the industrial action ballot in the comfort of their own home where they will receive their ballot paper.
However, the use of social media to highlight where members are attending gate meetings or showing their support for the CWU is vital to show that the length and breath of the UK we are all united in opposition to Royal Mail’s attack on our terms and conditions.
Fact 9 -Some of the usual anti-union suspects have been saying that Royal Mail just impose their changes on the workforce.
Fact check -If it was that easy, Royal Mail would have done it before.
The simple reality is that the introducing of unagreed and unacceptable change on the workforce is unacceptable and causes tensions and quality issues.
The only way change can ever work in Royal Mail is through negotiation and an agreement.
These are the facts not the spin.
It is time to once again rise up and vote yes!
Only by voting yes will you force Royal Mail into proper negotiations over the future.
Remember, that Royal Mail is obsessed with measuring everything we do. The one thing they don’t measure or value or want to recognise, are the buckets of goodwill that they get from us.
LET’S STAND TOGETHER ONCE AGAIN!!
A statement by the London Divisional Committee