Bundy posties join strike action
MORE than 80 Australia Post employees in Bundaberg have joined industrial action that could cost the organisation $35 million in revenue.
Workers have declared they will deliver unstamped mail over the Christmas period and take part in work stoppages at the end of the week, unless Australia Post introduces a new agreement that protects penalty shifts, rosters and take-home pay and improves workplace safety.
Communications Electrical and Plumbing Union Queensland Branch secretary Cameron Thiele said it was unfortunate that post workers had “no other option” in the matter.
“These people simply want a fair go,” he said.
“This is the first time we have had to take this sort of action with the stamps. It’s only because Australia Post is being such a Grinch.”
Mr Thiele said Bundaberg was a major player in country-wide action.
“Bundaberg is an important part of the post network with plenty of mail being sent and received in that area,” he said.
Strikes have been rumoured for Thursday and Friday, with employees threatening to stop work for anywhere from one hour to 24.
“We don’t want to inconvenience people at the busiest time of year for post but they have forced us to do this,” he said.
“We do apologise to anyone affected but hopefully it will be worth it.”
Bundaberg resident Joan Pearce sends about 70 Christmas cards each year and said she would not risk putting no stamp on her cards.
“I don’t think I would because mail can be a bit iffy at the best of times,” she said.
“It’s how I keep in touch with people and it’s not worth a few dollars to miss out on that.”
However, Mrs Pearce said she could sympathise with the post workers.
“They do a tremendous job and they work very hard but I think what they are doing is a bit drastic,” she said.
“Thirty-five million dollars is a lot to risk to get a point across.”
Australia Post spokesperson Alex Twomey said the action was “irresponsible”.
“This is a completely reckless message from the union to tell the public,” he said.
“Even they admit that they can’t promise the mail with no stamps will be delivered.”
Mr Twomey said the action was disappointing for Australians who sent around 70,000 cards at Christmas.
“They are causing these disruptions when the Australian people need us the most,” he said.