Royal Mail wins legal injunction to block strike

Marsha Scott
October 14, 2017

The High Court ruled yesterday (Thursday 12 October) that contractual dispute resolution procedures included in the Agenda for Growth agreement between Royal Mail and trade union Communications Workers Union (CWU) must be followed before any strike action regarding the ongoing pensions dispute is carried out. The industrial action was due to begin at noon on 19 October.

CWU disagreed, calling Royal Mail's legal challenge "underhanded" and "a deliberate attempt to misinterpret and use the agreement to stop postal workers exercising our right to strike".

Update: 17:50: Here's a video from Royal Mail explains that it's business as usual as negotiations continue.

Royal Mail responded to the announcement by calling the action "illegal". Almost three-quarters (73%) of the CWU's 111,000 Royal Mail employed members participated in the ballot.

The CWU said that the court injunction meant the dispute was "postponed - not cancelled".

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Afterwards the union said it was "extremely disappointed" at the ruling and claimed that strike action was inevitable without a major change in position by the company. Instead the company's actions will have the complete opposite effect.

Paul Wotton, secretary of the CWU's South West No.7 Branch covering the Bath area, said they were expecting "most members" to strike following the result of the national ballot.

The Labour MP Gill Furniss pledged her support for the union, telling the protest: "Despite the draconian laws imposed on workers, the CWU well surpassed the thresholds and sent a clear message to the company".

The postal services company said the United Kingdom higher court has ruled that contractual dispute resolution procedures under the Agenda for Growth must be followed before industrial action can take place.

The firm said it expected the process to take until Christmas and added: "We are very committed to working closely with the CWU in order to reach agreement as a matter of priority". "The first step is selecting a mediator acceptable to Royal Mail and the CWU from a panel that was agreed by both parties", he said.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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