I’d recently been doing my usual fencesitting with regards to the postal strike, particularly as my workplace is directly affected by the deliverability of Royal Mail items but not wholly convinced, as it’s been fairly obvious for a good long while now that the management of Royal Mail are almost completely inept at running a business in a profitable manner. (Aside – curiously, although we’re affected by them, my boss supports the strikes.)
I then came across an article from September this year written by postie of seven years ‘Roy Mayall’ (geddit?), where he quite matter-of-factly describes the scenarios faced by RM staff on a daily basis: edicts are implemented from upon high with no real workforce consultation; posties essentially forced to lie about their work volumes in the logbooks and regularly do unpaid overtime just to keep up with the sheer volume of work; union representatives railroaded out of any serious decision-making… Plus something which surprised me the most: Royal Mail’s official average of mail per bag, which they use to calculate yearly volume through their network, was not even close to the actual amount when a manual count was undertaken a little while back.
So, setting aside some of the very worrying (and arguably endemic) problems ‘Roy’ describes one of the Royal Mail’s core claims – that volume has been down year on year necessitating all the cost-cutting measures – is most likely little more than a spurious, disingenuous statement, completely contradicted when the hard facts are examined.
If you’re undecided about the postal strikes, I strongly suggest you read the article. It’s a real eye-opener, and might just convince you to change your view to supporting the RM staff in their strikes if you’re not 100% sure just yet. The full article can be found on the London Review of Books web site – click here to read it.