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Norway - PARALYZED POST DUE TO STRIKE? Expansion of strike by postal security workers at midnight means mail and packages bound for Svalbard's can't get required scanning for flights

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TrueBlueTerrier
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Norway - PARALYZED POST DUE TO STRIKE? Expansion of strike by postal security workers at midnight means mail and packages bound for Svalbard's can't get required scanning for flights

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pharmaceuticals, will be “paralyzed” if a strike by Posten Norge security officials escalates as scheduled at midnight Saturday, according to postal service officials.

The strike by about 2,000 security personnel that started Sept. 16 is expected to be joined by another 200 if an agreement is not reached by midnight, according to the security industry trade publication Aktuell Sikkerhet. That means postal security checks at additional airports will no longer occur.

“The security guard strike means that mail and business packages to a number of different flights from Tromsø and Bodø are not scanned, and thus they can not be loaded on the planes,” Kenneth Tjønndal, a Norway Post spokesman, said in a prepared statement. “The consequence is that there will be delays in mail and parcels from the terminals, and thus have major consequences for the postal service in northern Norway and Svalbard.”

“We are now entering a period of very high activity with online and Christmas shopping. With the pandemic situation we are in, online shopping, express and important business packages will be very important for the citizens.”

Practically speaking, the expanded strike will begin affecting flights to Tromsø with such cargo bound for Svalbard on Monday.

Postal flights to Svalbard Airport also bring other essentials such as fresh food products, since other groceries arrive on cargo ships that arrive far less frequently and take days to travel from the mainland. Posten Norge’s cargo ships arrive in the archipelago every 10 days.

A similar threat to timely arrival of essential supplies arose early last year when the number of mail flights was reduced to four per week arriving later in the day, meaning same-day delivery of drugs to the pharmacy would not be possible for those needing them. It also meant fresh items like seafood would show up at Svalbardbuttiken a day later, although officials resorted to a workaround of sorts by making cargo arrangements with daily commercial flights to Longyearbyen.

The security personnel are striking over demands for wage increases, plus disagree with management about involuntary part-time work, fixed pay versus hourly pay and the conditions for apprentices.
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