not on facebook
ANNOUNCEMENT : ALL OF ROYAL MAIL'S EMPLOYMENT POLICIES (AGREEMENTS) AT A GLANCE (UPDATED 2017)... HERE

ANNOUNCEMENT : NEW CORONAVIRUS FORUM... HERE



Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

20 Jul 2020, 22:35

https://www.redflagonline.org/nationali ... d-the-uso/

Since Royal Mail was privatised by the Coalition government in 2013, bosses and the CWU postal union have spent half the time in dispute. Union leaders bent over backwards to keep the Agenda for Growth 2014 agreement in place, while Royal Mail squeezed the agreement for savings, particularly pushing a part-time workforce.

But those quickly dried up, and as changes in the postal market kicked in, with letters volumes declining and parcels rising, and competition sharpened from non-unionised rivals like Amazon, shareholders and top bosses moved to attack the workers as the only source of hiking profit, and unlock the millions tied up in their jobs, terms and conditions. The non-stop disputes in Royal Mail since 2017 are the inevitable result of privatisation.

On being brought in as CEO two years ago, Rico Back immediately began to undermine the Four Pillars agreement, with the ink on it barely dry after months of dispute. A series of attacks, like hiving Parcelforce off into a separate company, and collaboration behind the scenes with the Tory government against the Universal Service Obligation, escalated to a full scale assault under the cover of the corona crisis.

On Postal Workers Day, 29 April, the company announced huge imposed shift changes to “help” workers, brushing the union aside. The union and its members faced the prospect of a humiliating defeat and the floodgates opened for the rest of Back’s restructuring plans, with the Tory review of the USO waiting in the wings to cut its legal six day delivery requirement.

Instead Back was forced into a humiliating climbdown by the CWU in an unprecedented move calling for defiance and workers threatening a national walkout from below, and two weeks later he was gone, resigned (or pushed), though not without banking his £1 million golden goodbye.

Back achieved nothing for the millions he has made off Royal Mail in his two years, other than the share price falling 65 per cent and the current dispute. His takings, including a £6 million golden hello, his seven-figure annual “package” built around his six figure salary, and buying up cheap shares, must run in excess of £10 million. But that’s capitalism for you, whose paid-up economists explain patiently to workers why we should be paid less to “incentivise” us but bosses need more to achieve their best results, getting millions just for showing up – or even if they crash the company.

It was great to see the back of Rico, but workers should be on guard and not fall for promises that things have changed.

Back to the Future

The new interim Royal Mail Chairman Keith Williams and UK Operations CEO Stuart Simpson – formerly part of the Back management team – want to accelerate Back’s plans, while committing to the Four Pillars too. Can the union really make them square that circle in favour of postal workers?

The 25 June financial report showed falling profits, claiming Royal Mail would have been in the red last year if not for the general election and other one-off windfalls. It stated the firm would continue Rico’s strategy “to move from being a UK-focused letters business that also delivers parcels to an international parcels business that delivers letters in the UK”. Keith Williams, a veteran of battles against the unions in British Airways, had already stated the need for “an accelerated pace of change across the business”.[1] More recently he announced the company was losing £1 million every day due to corona costs: PPE, staff absence, and a rise in parcels undercut by a bigger loss in letters and revenue.

Rico’s plan and then the corona crisis have seen this year’s dividends cut, putting millionaire shareholders on edge. Industry analysts have detected hints of a plan to cut loose Royal Mail Group’s profitable global arm GLS, to create a windfall for shareholders: the company’s annual results published talk about “few synergies” between the two wings, and “the opportunity remains to create more value for shareholders”. This is code for selling off the lucrative parts, the better to expedite restructuring by exposing the UK operation to the harsh winds of competition. And just as Back went out the door, news surfaced that shadowy Czech billionaire Daniel Křetínský – aka the “Czech sphinx” – had purchased a major £100 million stake in the company for reasons unknown – a corporate raid aimed at prying loose GLS? There is also the upcoming USO review by the government – any cut in the obligation will lead to thousands of job losses.

Whatever approach management takes, whether revisions to working practices or something more radical, in the long run Royal Mail cannot make a profit delivering parcels separately to letters at workers’ current terms and conditions, as CWU leaders have pointed out.

The question is, with declining letter volumes, whether Royal Mail can make a profit at all without forcing workers onto lower wages, worse terms and conditions and precarious forms of employment, from zero hours contracts to bogus self-employed status like its competitors.

The turn to part-time employment since even before 2014, with some contracts 20 hours a week or below, was already a move in that direction, creating a two-tier workforce that the Four Pillars was supposed to eliminate.

Nationalisation

Postal workers need a longer-term solution, and that can only be nationalisation of the postal network and the 35 hour week. If Royal Mail provided an essential service in the lockdown, and it did, and is not solvent due to its costs, it should be renationalised and reintegrated with the Post Office.

The bosses don’t need a penny in compensation – the hedge funds and other big shareholders have taken well over a billion pounds out of the business in seven years of privatisation, and more in speculating in Royal Mail shares – and now they are piling in to bet on its failure.[2]

In a video to CWU members, Dave Ward said that, to come up with a sustainable plan for Royal Mail, “we will have to talk to government about that and the USO.” It is time the CWU leaders put forward union policy which is to call for renationalisation. As Red Flag stated before, that is the only possible way a “fourth emergency service” could have worked. They should unite the TUC behind that call now, and link it to a wider campaign to nationalise all employers making redundancies or closing due to corona.

Nationalisation may seem like a big task, but in fact the crisis has unleashed a wave of unionisation and anger across the working class in Britain. The Tory government is preparing to make workers pay for the corona crisis bailout for business, just like they made us pay for the bank bailout in 2008, because last time the leaders of the unions and Labour did nothing. This time let’s learn the lessons and organise a mass resistance to the coming austerity, and use it to build support for our dispute and nationalisation.

[1] https://dailybusinessgroup.co.uk/2020/0 ... ceo-quits/

[2] https://www.fnlondon.com/articles/hedge ... k-20200521

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

21 Jul 2020, 11:30

Surely , we can all deduce there is not a cat in hell's chance of the RM being renationalised !!

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

21 Jul 2020, 12:51

borders wrote:Surely , we can all deduce there is not a cat in hell's chance of the RM being renationalised !!

The deluded are still debating ready to deduce or not...it.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

21 Jul 2020, 18:40

borders wrote:Surely , we can all deduce there is not a cat in hell's chance of the RM being renationalised !!


The only parts of R M that may be re nationalised are the unprofitable parts , the UK Goverment would then Devolve the running of the service to the Assemblies / Parliments of the three other countries making up the The UK , ie NI , Scotland & Wales
It would be then up to each country as to what level of service to provide ( Subsidize )

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

21 Jul 2020, 20:17

Sorry Postman , you will have to run that one past me again !! ??
Last edited by borders on 22 Jul 2020, 07:55, edited 1 time in total.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

21 Jul 2020, 23:11

At least the article didn't have the usual clap trap about the workers setting up grass root workers committees to overthrow the yoke of capitalism...... for that we have to be thankful.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 15:13

Rebecca, no ones intrested in this lefty rubbish, it aint gonna happen

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 15:17

2yearpostie wrote:Rebecca, no ones interested in this lefty rubbish, it aint gonna happen

How do you know nobody is interested?

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 15:28

I'm interested rebecca dont understand why we have to make a profit for private shareholders rather than for the coffers of the country.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 15:59

gb93 wrote:I'm interested rebecca dont understand why we have to make a profit for private shareholders rather than for the coffers of the country.

Well the basic argument is state owned monopolies are inefficient whereas private companies are more competitive and offer better value for money to the consumer (and to the taxpayer.)
I am not sure that the taxpayer has benefited greatly by the privatisation of Royal Mail. Certainly the workforce hasn't.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 16:41

Well think it is about time that basic argument was shot down
Cause in reality all it does is give unscrupulous private industry carte blanche to drive down terms & conditions of ordinary workers to fill the already over flowing pockets of those at the top.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 17:57

gb93 wrote:I'm interested rebecca dont understand why we have to make a profit for private shareholders rather than for the coffers of the country.


It doesnt matter if it goes to shareholders or government, We will never see the profits and itll either get spent on a shareholders duck pond, or a MPs duckpond.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 20:38

A couple points to point out here:

1. Amazon is NOT our rival - They don't do what we do and vice versa.
2. The Czech guy wants to split GLS away from RM, this is his agenda and nothing else.
3. We deliver letters, they are not in decline at the rate that's been touted, mail is increasing at the moment, slowly compared to a month ago and come September things will pick up when the kids are back at school.
4. RM cannot risk a full on Part time workforce because all you have to do is work your part timers hours and the job is screwed.
Last edited by Phantom on 23 Jul 2020, 07:48, edited 1 time in total.

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

22 Jul 2020, 23:29

Re-nationalising RM won't make any difference if anything it may make it worse? Some may have forgotten that RM was in a s**t state before privatisation, the biggest disaster was the pension deficit caused by a succession of incompetent bosses taking a "break" on paying into our pension fund which ended up in a massive government bailout. On top of that, RMs structure was far too top heavy on the management side, with far more bosses than necessary in comparison to the amount of workers. It was very inefficient and let's be fair, most on deliveries were finishing well before their contracted hours every week and still racking up healthy o/t pay! There were many many problems. The best solution would be a subsidised private company with the government recognising us as an essential service and offering some sort of financial support to allow us to continue with the USO as it stands and covering some of the costs of the loss making areas of the business. Which of course won't happen so basically we are all screwed! :roll:

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

23 Jul 2020, 09:16

Judgee wrote:Re-nationalising RM won't make any difference if anything it may make it worse? Some may have forgotten that RM was in a s**t state before privatisation, the biggest disaster was the pension deficit caused by a succession of incompetent bosses taking a "break" on paying into our pension fund which ended up in a massive government bailout. On top of that, RMs structure was far too top heavy on the management side, with far more bosses than necessary in comparison to the amount of workers. It was very inefficient and let's be fair, most on deliveries were finishing well before their contracted hours every week and still racking up healthy o/t pay! There were many many problems. The best solution would be a subsidised private company with the government recognising us as an essential service and offering some sort of financial support to allow us to continue with the USO as it stands and covering some of the costs of the loss making areas of the business. Which of course won't happen so basically we are all screwed! :roll:

excellent post Judgee , i think the idea of a subsidised private company is spot on and i actually think this will have to happen . i think a subsidy will come about by the re-configuration of the USO , which will most likely mean job losses . they have addressed the top heavy management structure , 2000 job losses there , but this company is too fat , the workforce is too institutionalised and poorly motivated . Inefficiency is rife , there is no accuracy in work methods and frankly automation cant come quick enough .
Now i was gutted when they privatised the RM but that horse has bolted . Luckily we have a Union , but i would like to know what their vision of RM is , going forward ? is it protecting jobs at all costs or a leaner , accurate , smarter working company with decent T and C's for those that are left ?

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

23 Jul 2020, 10:02

borders wrote:Surely , we can all deduce there is not a cat in hell's chance of the RM being renationalised !!


There is, just not the kind of renationalisation most might want.

The options for the long term sustainability of the letters side of the USO are pretty bleak.

A greatly reduced service or government subsidy in one form or another?

Nationalise Royal Mail, Defend the USO!

23 Jul 2020, 10:14

Woody Guthrie wrote:
borders wrote:Surely , we can all deduce there is not a cat in hell's chance of the RM being renationalised !!


There is, just not the kind of renationalisation most might want.

The options for the long term sustainability of the letters side of the USO are pretty bleak.

A greatly reduced service or government subsidy in one form or another?

Something like we have talked about above !!

Previous page Next page


Page 1 of 1