Royal Mail Employees Approve Strike – Union Delays Action During National Crisis

Royal Mail CWU members approve strike

Royal Mail said it is disappointed Communication Workers Union (CWU) members have voted 94.5% in favour of a strike.

However, there is no imminent fear of a strike as CWU followed up on Twitter, “We will not be calling strike action at this point and are proposing postal workers become an additional Emergency Service during this national crisis.”

Vote Details

Royal Mail notes that based on what CWU said that with a 63.4% turnout – and taking into account frontline employees who are not union members (around 12,281) – 53.9% have backed a strike.

In a ballot for CWU members in Parcelforce Worldwide concerning the point of principle dispute, CWU has reported that the ballot turnout did not meet the 50% legal threshold.

In a separate ballot for CWU members in Parcelforce Worldwide about TUPE separation, 95.4% voted in favour of a strike.

Based on what CWU said, with a 51.2% turnout – and taking into account around 1,409 frontline employees who are not union members – 37.1% have backed a strike.

In February, Royal Mail reiterated it offered a 6%, three-year pay proposal for CWU-grade people at Royal Mail. This means an increase, including the first hour of the shorter working week, of over 16% between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2023.

“We welcome and appreciate CWU’s statement this afternoon that now is not the time to take industrial action [strike]. We contacted CWU last week to work together to protect our people, our country and our company. We are talking to them about how we can do that together.”


Shane O’Riordain, Managing Director of Regulation, Corporate Affairs and Marketing, Royal Mail

Royal Mail Key Part of The UK’s Infrastructure

The postal service is a crucial part of the UK’s infrastructure at this time. Royal Mail continues delivery as usual to communities across the country.

The delivery of parcels and letters is an existential way of keeping the country together and helping many people who may not have the option to leave their homes.

As the COVID-19 crisis has developed, Royal Mail has tried to work with CWU to formulate and implement the appropriate sick pay and absence policy for employees. Both sides agreed to the policy and communicated it to Royal Mail’s employees last week.

Employees, including those with less than one year’s service, will receive full pay if faced with any COVID-19 illness or self-isolation.

Royal Mail also has made adjustments to its parcel handling procedures to protect employees and customers.

Do you think Royal Mail and CWU can find common ground to avoid a strike?

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