Sinn Féin - On Your Side

North’s Economy cannot sustain a protracted postal dispute

4 October, 2007

Sinn Féin Foyle MLA Raymond McCartney has said that failure to reach agreement in the current postal dispute could have devastating consequences for the North's economy.

Mr McCartney said:

"It been well documented in the past few weeks the ongoing dispute between Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union (CWU) and failure to reach an agreement over modernisation plans and fears of thousands of jobs losses.

"There is now a real fear out there in the business community and service industries that the planned escalation of the industrial action this week could have serious consequences for the North's economy .The months of October, November and December are crucial to many businesses to enable them to sustain jobs and services for the other nine months of the year. Any disruption of the free flow of stock for the Christmas Market, cheques, and invoices will undoubtedly have a serious impact on many businesses.

"There is now a further fear that Royal Mail managers are also set to go on strike .Unite ,the union which represents 12,000 managers has also threatened to ballot its members over strike action in a dispute over pensions. Unite, says Royal Mail wants to close its pension scheme to current members and raise the retirement age." ENDS

Note to editors

130,000 postal workers will walk out for 48 hours at the start of all shifts between 12 noon on Thursday 4th October and 12 noon on Saturday 6th October.

There will be a second 48 strike with postal workers walking out on shifts starting between 3am on Monday 8th and 3am Wednesday 10th October.

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