Royal Mail wins High Court injunction preventing planned strike action
12 October 2017, 07:21 | Hattie Nash
Union does not rule out Christmas strikes
"Postal workers delivered a massive "Yes" vote for strike action and we are determined to take whatever steps are necessary to deliver an agreement that will protect and enhance our members' terms and conditions and improve the range of services on offer to customers", he said.
Royal Mail's application for an injunction to stop the planned industrial action by members of the Communications Workers Union (CWU) is set to be heard in court this morning.
The industrial action would have been the first strike at Royal Mail since the postal group was privatised in 2015.
"We will now make contact with the CWU as a matter of urgency to begin the process of external mediation", the company said.
The injunction, Royal Mail claims, is necessary to prevent hundreds of thousands of people across the United Kingdom being deliberately inconvenienced as well as the company suffering commercially. The last mass industrial action among postal workers was in 2009.
Mr Justice Supperstone, who granted the injunction, said: "I consider the strike call to be unlawful and the defendant is obliged to withdraw its strike call until the external mediation process has been exhausted".
The CWU had balloted 110,000 members, with 89.1 per cent supporting strike action on a 73.7 per cent turnout.
More than 100 postal workers including Dave Ward, the CWU's general secretary, gathered outside the high court for the verdict. "We're going in there with a 90% vote for action and whatever happens today we'll be walking out of here with a 90% vote for action".
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.
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Royal Mail said talks would likely take until around Christmas time to complete, or possibly longer.