Union threatens mail service stop
ROCKHAMPTON residents won’t be alone when they find their mail boxes empty this week.
Twenty-four-hour stoppages by mail officers, delivery officers and transport drivers across Australia are on the cards, meaning you might not get mail during this period.
Communication Workers Union (CWU) state delegate Kev Hogan yesterday told The Morning Bulletin Australia Post staff were planning to take strike action in a push for improved health and safety and job security.
He said the strike action would “cause massive disruption” to the Rockhampton area as it had one of the state’s regional mail centres in Elphinstone Street, with about 80 staff.
Mr Hogan, who is based at the centre, said upwards of 60 Rockhampton workers would be on strike.
He said residents might experience delays with deliveries and processing of mail later this week as postal workers took part in industrial action.
“CWU members Australia-wide are asking customers to be understanding of the situation and we are advising customers to post earlier in the week to make sure they are not affected,” he said yesterday.
“We need a commitment from Australia Post that they will maximise full-time jobs in the industry and protect penalty rates for their employees.”
Branch secretary of CWU Cameron Thiele confirmed “mail won’t be moving for a period of 24 hours” this week and said it would be the first stoppage of many to come if the company did not return to the negotiating table.
The union has outlined in notices to Australia Post that it plans to engage in stoppages of various lengths, stop-work meetings, a ban on sorting parcels, a ban on overtime and a ban on checking for stamps.
Other action by workers would include a protest outside the mail centre. National manager of external affairs of Australia Post Alex Twomey said he was informed the strike action could begin as early as today.
“We think it’s completely unnecessary and we think the public would have a right to be angry,” he said.
“We will put contingences in place to ensure any disruption is minimal.”