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Falkirk posties face pay cut for staying home in 'red alert' blizzards

12 Mar 2018, 16:40

https://www.falkirkherald.co.uk/news/fa ... -1-4704133

ImageFlashback to November, when there was 100 per cent support for an unofficial strike launched by Falkirk Communications Workers Union members.

Falkirk posties who heeded explicit Holyrood safety advice during the worst of the Beast from the East blizzards have been hit with pay cuts.

Around 35 of Falkirk’s delivery workers are set to lose anything up to four days’ pay for failing to appear at Falkirk delivery office at a time when the whole area was at a virtual standstill.

The shock Royal Mail move has stunned and angered local members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU), and a ballot for strike action is on the cards.

Many did arrive for work, braving treacherous conditions to hike three or four miles in spite of repeated warnings from the Scottish Government and the police. I

t’s understood the Royal Mail’s intention to inflict pay cuts on those who failed to appear will be raised in the Scottish Parliament by West Lothian MSP Ian Findlay.

The SNP government is also to look at how new ways could be introduced to protect postal and other employees from being forced to work in dangerous conditions.

The CWU branch involved in the growing row represents workers in Falkirk, Edinburgh, Fife and the Borders, but branch secretary Gary Clark wants to make the issue a national “line in the sand” dispute over basic rights. He told the Falkirk Herald: “We had the situation where people were being expected to turn up for work despite explicit warnings not to - at centres where there was in any no work to do.

“Depending on shift patterns people could lose one day’s pay or anything up to four days’ pay - it is completely unacceptable,”

His view is fully backed by Falkirk CWU secretary Paul Wright - who is also assistant branch secretary for the region. He said: “We had the situation where people were walking up to four miles from Shieldhill to Falkirk down the main road - the only way that was clear - while the Scottish Government was saying people shouldn’t go out unless it was an emergency.

“People simply shouldn’t be expected to work in those conditions”. The mood among postal workers across the region is said to be “very angry”, and backing for strike action is reckoned to be solid.

Those now facing sanctions for heeding the Scottish Government and police safety advice have the options of taking a pay cut, taking a cut to annual leave, or making up the lost time through work.

Many Falkirk Herald readers voiced their support in online comments following our original story about the pay cut decision at the weekend.

A spokesperson for the Royal Mail said: “Royal Mail has had no official notice of any ballot for strike action. “Royal Mail has a clear adverse weather policy for employees who are unable to get into work.

“Employees should, in the first instance speak to their line manager about any issues.

“All employees are able to use annual leave or make up the time lost.

“Employees can also if they prefer take unpaid time off if they are unable to attend work.

“If a site has been closed by the business or, because of disruption there is no work to be processed or delivered, employees would receive their normal pay.”

Falkirk posties face pay cut for staying home in 'red alert' blizzards

12 Mar 2018, 19:39

I'm in that office and support will be rock solid for strike action if RM enforce this nonsense.

Falkirk posties face pay cut for staying home in 'red alert' blizzards

13 Mar 2018, 07:11

ayrshires finest will be alongside you

Falkirk posties face pay cut for staying home in 'red alert' blizzards

13 Mar 2018, 17:51

As far as i'm aware this has happened all across the west of scotland. So much for the management "changing" :cuppa

Falkirk posties face pay cut for staying home in 'red alert' blizzards

13 Mar 2018, 20:01

"If a site has been closed by the business or, because of disruption there is no work to be processed or delivered, employees would receive their normal pay.”


The holes in this policy are big enough to drive a bus through, our mailcentre closed at 2pm so the back shift had to turn up to get paid and those that didn't are facing claw back but it was closed until the following afternoon so the night shift got paid whether they turned up or not as did the day shift. Why should the shift you're on determine whether you get paid? What if you can only work days because you're a carer, isn't that discrimination?

Our DO closed on the Thursday at 0840 so anyone due to start after that got paid including the back shift regardless of whether you made any attempt to get to work or not but what if you were due to start at 0830 and were quite reasonably 20 minutes late? What if you spent 2 hrs digging your car out just to get to work 5 minutes after it shut?

I live within walking distance of my DO, why should I get paid just because of where I live? What if you have a medical condition, should you be walking to work in a blizzard?

Why were we expected to get to work in a red alert situation when it was blatantly obvious even to the most useless lump of management that zero productive work could or would be achieved. Was it just pure spite?

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