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Posties launch stamp boycott

Tuesday, 15 December 2009
By Print21

Posties have vowed to deliver unstamped mail from today until Christmas Eve, protesting Australia Post’s refusal to meet demands for improved job security, better workplace safety and protection of take home pay.

“On Monday Australia Post employees will allow unstamped letters through – instead of returning them to sender,” said Ed Husic, National President of the Communications Electrical Plumbing Union.

However Australia Post representatives warned consumers not to bank on the free postage, because less than a quarter of workers are taking part.

“Only 8876 staff voted for industrial action out of 17,970 union members and 35,000 staff. This isn’t even half of the union membership and represents only a small minority of our total staff,” said Alex Twomey, Australia Post’s spokesperson.

“Our message to the public is clear; only mail with correct postage will be delivered.”

The Union leadership has admitted that there may be some postal disruptions as a result of the action.

The industrial action comes on the heels of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) rejection of Australia Post’s draft proposal to increase the basic stamp price from 55c to 60c.

Australia Post put its draft proposal to the ACCC in July, seeking to increase the prices of a number of its Small, Large and PreSort letter services, as well as the standard stamp. It argued that a decline in demand for letter services between 2007-08 and 2008-09, as well as rapid growth in areas like western Sydney and south-east Melbourne created significant cost pressures.

However the ACCC was not convinced, saying that they were unable to determine how Australia Post’s demand forecasts were derived.

Australia Post said it was “surprised and extremely disappointed” by the ACCC’s decision.

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