This morning [yesterday] a few Wobblies from Bristol travelled down to Bridgwater, Somerset to give support to striking postal workers and hand over a donation from members in our branch.
This was the posties’ seventh day of strike action since late June. Despite contradictory claims by management, the morale and support for the action among the workers remains strong. 109 out of a total of 122 at the depot are on strike, with over 50 gathered outside at one point this morning. Members of other unions have also been showing their support by visiting the picket lines and donating to the solidarity fund.
As we have also seen at previous strikes in Bristol, Royal Mail always manage to find the money to ship in scab management from elsewhere, put them up nearby and hire god knows how many minibuses to drive them in. This is happening against a backdrop of bullying and harrassment allegations against management, which has increased against CWU reps as the series of strikes has gone on. Far from detering workers from fighting against cuts to jobs and bullying managers working conditions, it seems to have only strengthed their resolve. There are two more days of strike action planned (Saturday 17th and Monday 19th), with the possibility of longer strike action in early September.
What’s happening in Bridgwater seems to be becoming common practise across the rest of the country. We saw a similar dispute in Bristol at the end of last year and it has recently been announced that the Communication Workers Union will ballot for national strike action next month in response to the proposed privitisation of Royal Mail. Next Saturday will also see postal workers in Weston-Super-Mare take strike action for the first time in 20 years.
We will be paying another visit to Bridgwater very soon and we wish the striking posties there and across the rest of the country the best of luck in their fight against the privatisation and casualisation of their work and cuts to their pay and working conditions.
The longer the picket line, the shorter the strike.