Solidarity with the postal workers!
Wednesday October 21, 2009 19:07 by worker - Bristol IWW supporter
Oppose privatisation and job losses
The strike by CWU members (http://www.cwu.org/) this Thursday and Friday looks set to go ahead, despite intense pressure and intimidation by Royal Mail bosses, the entire Government, all 3 main political parties, the CBI and every boss keen to exploit their workers for profit. On the sidelines, historic strikebreakers like TNT (remember the printers Wapping strike?), Manpower and other private companies hoping to benefit from the break-up of Royal Mail are licking their lips in anticipation.
Much is being made of the need for postal workers (both CWU members and the ununionised) to accept 'modernisation' in the interests of the Royal Mail business. CWU members have already seen at least 50,000 jobs go in recent years, whilst last year Royal Mail made an operating profit of some £321million, with top bosses raking in huge bonuses. Every worker, be they in the private or public sectors, knows that 'modernisation' means new technologies, new working practices, less staff, and of course more work, usually with no extra pay.
So what benefit is there for CWU members in modernisation? The only benefits suggested by opponents of the strike appear to be that they should work on in some sort of twisted 'national interest', and to help Royal Mail stay in business. Well of course it will, its hardly going to shut down overnight is it! There is no carrot being offered to CWU members, no real benefits or gains for them. CWU members, and those of us with a couple of brain cells to rub together, can see clearly there is a long term aim to privatise much if not all of Royal Mail's operations, and this will be much easier if there is no strong union to defend workers jobs and interests. Because at the end of the day, when it comes down to business, privatisation, and making a profit, the interests of the workers involved come right at the bottom of any list of beneficiaries, if they are on it at all.
The recently formed Bristol branch of the IWW believes the CWU, and workers everywhere, are absolutely entitled to fight their corner and defend their jobs and interests. Nobody else will. These are harsh times for workers everywhere, but not we note for the bosses, banks, corporate investors, takeover-merchants, or of course the politicians. And times are not going to get any easier, all workers will be paying for the economic mess this economy is in for decades to come.
It is not written in stone though that we have to accept their logic of modernisation and its negative implications for us, nor that we have to accept paying for their crisis. We do not have to lie down and just take it. There is another logic though that says it does not have to be like this at all. We can stand up together and say enough is enough.
Bristol IWW has discussed the CWU strike and attended the recent support group meeting. We offer all postal workers, and any workers, taking whatever action they deem necessary, our full support. Whenever possible and wherever we can we will put this into practice.
Bristol IWW has produced a basic flyer (see pdf below) to encourage solidarity with the postal workers. Feel free to print if off and use it as you see fit. Alternatively, make your own (see here for a DIY example: http://www.bristol.indymedia.org/article/691207?&conden...45999)
Here is the basic text of the IWW flyer/poster:
SOLIDARITY ACTION BY BRISTOL IWW
IN SUPPORT OF THE CWU
PLEASE SUPPORT YOUR POST SERVICE
The postal services trade union, the CWU, has balloted it's members on strike action in the face of pay cuts and job losses. After the massive cash bail out of the Banks with our money, they are intent on the destruction on one of the last public owned services. Management have forwarded these cuts to the Workers as part of a modernisation programme, which in turn will lead to the selling of our Post Offices. Already thousands of jobs have been lost, as deliveries have been cut, and Post Offices shut. Fight back and help defend your Post service, or will we see the privatisation of it. Have we had better services after the selling of gas, electricity, water and transport? No, prices have gone up, and the service is worse, whilst the few get the wealth. It will be the £1 stamp by next Christmas.
Support your Postie, cut out and place over your letter box. And STOP Scab managers breaking the STRIKE!
WE SUPPORT OUR POSTIE - NO SCAB MAIL HERE