This summer has seen industrial action taken by unions across multiple sectors over pay and conditions. Railway workers, bin collectors, barristers, and more have been striking, with many citing insufficient pay rises when factoring in the rising cost of living as the cause.
The CWU has said: ‘Our Royal Mail members have had an unagreed 2 per cent pay deal imposed on them.’
‘This is at a time when RPI inflation is currently running at 11.8 per cent and when Royal Mail has announced Group profits of £758 million and when the company is paying out many millions to private shareholders.’
On the services to be provided on strike dates, Royal Mail has said that it is doing everything it can to minimise disruption, but although it has ‘well-developed contingency plans’, it won’t be possible for them to ‘fully replace the daily efforts of its frontline workforce.’
They also promise to increase capacity in the days following strikes to help deal with disruption.
While many branches will remain open on strike days, some Post Office services may also be affected.
So, when are the strike dates and what could face disruption?
Here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming strikes.
When are the next CWU strike dates?
The first of the strikes is taking place today (26 August), with three subsequent walkouts planned. The dates are:
- Friday 26 August
- Wednesday 31 August
- Thursday 8 September
- Friday 9 September
Will post offices be open during the strike action?
The majority of post offices should be open. However, a minority may be affected by the strike action on 26 and 27 August.
You can find out which branches will be affected via the list on the post office website.
What post office services will be affected by strike action?
The Post Office has warned that posting letters and parcels, Drop & Go, Travel money, Banking (cheque deposits), and some identity services (e.g. paper form passport check and send) may be affected by strike action. Full information is available on the post office website.
Royal Mail and ParcelForce Worldwide collections will face delays and some post office branches may not be able to accept mail on days of industrial action if they reach their acceptance capacity.
If ordering travel money online the day before or the day of strike action, it will not be available for branch collection or home delivery the next working day, and the stock of foreign currency may be low.
They advise customers to order travel money two or three days in advance or four or five days for Travel Money Cards.
While cheque deposits can take place as usual, there may be a delay in it reaching your account.
While Passport Check & Send services may be subject to delays in reaching their destination, it shouldn’t affect the date you receive your passport.
However, The delivery of biometric residence permits to post office branches may be subject to delays.
What other Royal Mail services will be affected by the strike?
Several Royal Mail services will be disrupted during the strikes, and any item posted before, on, or in the days after strike action may be subject to delay. They will also be unable to deliver letters on strike dates, apart from Special Delivery post.
Royal Mail has promised to deliver as many Special Delivery or Tracked24 parcels as possible. However, they cannot guarantee delivery of all items by 9am or 1pm the next day and are suspending the next-day guarantee. Customers will not be able to claim compensation for delays caused by strikes.
Wherever possible, Royal Mail will also prioritise the delivery of COVID test kits and medical prescriptions.
Although Royal Mail says customers can continue to post items at Postboxes or Post Offices, collections will be less frequent on days when strike action is due. As such, they are urging anyone looking to use post items to do it as early as possible in advance of the strike dates.
The Royal Mail also state that Delivery Offices and Customer Service Points will be closed on days when CWU strike action occurs.
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