Update from Martin Walsh from CWU PEC
“It would not be right for me to reveal the details of the talks as they are at a crucial stage.
However I can say that the talks are about agreeing guiding principles some of which will need further detail and agreement.
This potential covers a magnitude of issues ranging from: pay, shorter working week, job security, MTSF, parcel growth now in the future including 24/7 operation, The New Parcel Hubs, legal guarantees, 4 pillars, productivity and efficiency, revisions/ frequency, scan in scan out and what it can and can’t be used for, new trial process, Dispute resolution process, culture, resource scheduler and USO debate.
So you can see it covers a range of Issues and out of each of those principles there a myriad of sub sections for example delivery revisions, you have the model week, The new FMO process, new revision process .
I won’t go into further detail until of any of the above but negotiations are not only about agreeing issues but also agreeing a form of words which both sides are happy with.
- Any pay deal has to be put to the membership it is within the CWU Rule Book. That has to be an individual member ballot ie postal ballot.
- Pay cannot be separated from the overall agreement as clearly Royal Mail want certain issues to resolved so they can be confident in funding a pay agreement.
- Anyone who has been in high level talks know that it is one thing agreeing issues, it is another getting a form of words which both parties are happy with. Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed. Remember each issue is important.
- On pay some have said they want more on the overtime rate, all I would say is that if there are 200 or 250 million on the table for the pay agreement, there is only so many ways you can cut it . If you want it backdated than clearly the percentage weekly increase would be lower if you did not back date it. If you only wanted it on base pay not overtime etc than it would be higher.
However you want an higher over time rate that clearly you would be moving some away from base pay. Only 20% of members work regular overtime that is worth considering .
If part timers work extra hours up to 38 hours they receive the hourly rate plus each hours share of the delivery supplement so they won’t benefit from increasing overtime. So it is always a judgement on pay.
The union policy is to get the base pensionable rate as high as possible and recognise that this should be backdated.”