3,000 staff from Crown Post Offices are striking today and tomorrow over pay, pension arrangements and the proposed branch closures. The strike will only affect 300 Crown Post Offices and not the over 11,000 other Post Office counters. The Post Office said that 250 of the Crown Post Office branches would be open, but that around 50 would be closed during the strike.
Andy Furey, from the CWU trade union, said:
“All of the blame for this unfortunate turn of events is 100 per cent down to the intransigence of the company, who have launched an unprecedented attack on the jobs, job security, and pensions of thousands of hard-working and loyal Post Office workers.
Our members want the Post Office management to pause its closure and privatisation programme, hold off on its planned pensions changes, and commit to sitting down with us and with the other key stakeholders of this Great British institution and, together, construct a lasting vision”.
The Post Office criticised the strikes, saying that:
“The message today to customers of the Post Office service going out to post Christmas letters and parcels is that it will be business as usual. This very regrettable strike action will have a minimal impact on customers”.
Mark Davies, a Communications Officer for the Post Office, added:
“We have reduced losses from £120m four years ago, to £26m in the last year, and we hope to break even next year. We don’t believe that taxpayers should pay out to support the Post Office”.