Royal Mail workers could be next to strike as fears grow of new 'Winter of Discontent' 2 days ago

Royal Mail workers could be next to strike as fears grow of new 'Winter of Discontent'

Royal Mail workers will be sent ballot papers on Tuesday

Royal Mail workers could be the next to go on strike as they prepare to vote in the coming weeks on proposed industrial action.

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Around 115,000 Communication Workers Union (CWU) members will be voting on the proposal after the union rejected Royal Mail's 2% pay award offer, which was labelled "totally inadequate."

On Tuesday, June 28, CWU members will be sent ballot papers to vote on the industrial action.

The union's general secretary Terry Pullinger said Royal Mail's pay offer is "miles away from where inflation is."

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In a clip shared on Twitter, Pullinger said: "We will be serving a notice on Royal Mail Group over a pay claim – our claim for an inflation-based, no-strings pay award."

CWU members will have a three week period to vote in once the ballot papers are sent out, with a result announced on July 19.

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The announcement comes as rail workers take part in the biggest strike action in more than 30 years, with other unions also threatening potential strikes in the autumn.

The National Education Union (NEU) has said it is preparing to hold a ballot of its 450,000 members after it rejected the government's 3 percent pay rise offered earlier this year.

The union's general secretary Kevin Courtney told the Observer: “If there is no significant improvement on 3% – which will leave an 8% gap with inflation this year alone – we cannot avoid a ballot.

"The mood among teachers has changed. Last year the issue was mainly workload. This year it is workload and pay."

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Meanwhile, Unison has warned that if its annual pay offer from the government falls short of inflation - which hit a 40-year high of 9.1 percent on Tuesday - then there could be possible strike action.

Its general secretary Christina McAnea said: "The government has a simple choice. Either it makes a sensible pay award, investing in staff and services and reducing delays for patients.

"Or it risks a potential dispute, growing workforce shortages and increased suffering for the sick."

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Downing Street has said it would be "reckless" to provide across-the-board pay rises in line with inflation to teachers, nurses and more.

There are growing fears that industrial action across unions could lead to another 'Winter of Discontent', reminiscent of the scenes witnessed across the country during the late 1970s under Margaret Thatcher.

This autumn, inflation is expected to rise to 11 percent, as the country continues to deal with a cost of living crisis. Final pay offers to public sector workers are expected to be between 3 percent and 4 percent.

In regards to the potential CWU strike action, Royal Mail has said talks are still scheduled and it hopes the dispute will be resolved.

A spokesperson for the company said: "We believe there are no grounds for industrial action.

"We offered a deal worth up to 5.5% for CWU grade colleagues, the biggest increase we have offered for many years, which was rejected by the CWU."

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