POST OFFICE: PAY DISPUTE – ESSENTIAL TO DELIVER A STRONG YES VOTE
Branches are advised ballot papers have started to arrive from today. Reports from Reps suggest we are on track to deliver a healthy Yes vote. However, we will not be complacent; accordingly, Branches are encouraged to continue making every effort to engage with members with the key message being the importance of returning ballot papers to ensure we surpass the legal threshold. The ballot paper communication is attached.
Late last week Post Office published the attached communication. Bizarrely they said they were “disappointed” we had instigated the strike ballot. This disappointment pales into insignificance compared to the outrage being expressed by many members who evidently feel a pay freeze is an absolute insult.
It was revealing to discover Government has provided Post Office with very nearly £1.2bn in subsidy since March 2021. This eye-watering sum of money needs to be considered against the backdrop that just £5m extra on the pay bill shared amongst our members would resolve this pay dispute. Therefore, the excuse of affordability cannot be proffered as a reason for the pay freeze.
Additionally, Post Office has unsurprisingly delayed the publication of its Annual Report & Accounts for 2020/21, although we are given to understand that when finally published, a healthy profit will once again be declared. This further demonstrates the issue of affordability is not a barrier to a pay agreement. It is likely the Report & Accounts will also provide information in regard to the millions of pounds that has been wasted defending the indefensible in respect of the Horizon scandal – money that could have been used to improve members’ terms and conditions.
We are naturally committed to reaching a negotiated settlement, which we aim to secure following our members delivering what will hopefully be a powerful Yes vote.