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CWU Scotland No.2 Branch at Conference 2024 Report by Owain Beaumont Branch Secretary Scotland No2. Emergency Motions included.

CWU Scotland No.2 Branch at Conference 2024

This years Conference was very different to previous years. Against the backdrop of an unpopular agreement, we are also facing the biggest change in Royal Mail in a generation. The disgraceful way in which the network window changes directly impact our members in Scotland, disproportionately to the rest of the UK, is simply unacceptable. Our members deserve better and the Scottish public deserve the same service as the rest of the UK. As a Branch we had to make sure we were heard loud and clear and I believe with the help of other Branches across Scotland we achieved this. Now lies the task of delivering the best possible outcome for our members with regards to these changes.

A huge problem for this Union since Royal Mail enforced it, is our new entrants terms and conditions. Upscaling these has to be our main priority as a Union. Having people do the same work for different pay, terms and conditions is simply unacceptable and as a Union, something we cannot allow to continue.

Then we come to the exemption process. Nothing more than a tick box exercise for Royal Mail. A process that was supposed to protect people, and keep them in employment has turned out to be, what we believe to be, a centrally controlled rejection of genuine cases across the board. As the recent figures released by the business would also suggest. Nowhere in the UK has seen this level of exemption rejections.

The first two days of Conference were for restructuring, then rules. Basically, changes that need to be made for the future, to protect the CWU as a stand alone Union. The first day was to agree policy for the restructure then day 2 enshrining those changes into the National rulebook.

At postal Conference we, as a Branch, put forward motion 16. Wording at the back of this report. First of all I would like to thank Glasgow Amal for formally seconding the motion and a thank you to all Scottish Branches for supporting the motion. Although it fell to a card vote which was very close, I believe we did a great job in ensuring this issue remains a top priority going forward. Although this motion fell, there were other good motions on this subject that did get passed.

We as a Branch also seconded composite emergency motion 5 on the network review disproportionately effecting our members in Scotland. I would like to thank Glasgow Amal, Highland Amal and Orkney, who, with our Branch put forward this motion. I would also like to thank all Scottish Branches that supported the motion. Wording for the motion at the back of this report.

This was one motion everyone felt extremely passionate about, particularly in Scotland. This was felt in all the contributions and speeches. This motion was passed unanimously and would like to thank all Branches for supporting us.

We were also asked as a Branch to formally second Highland Amal’s emergency motion 6.

This motion was about the joke of an exemption process implemented by Royal Mail in regards to the network review. This was another motion that delegates were very passionate about, as was seen by the speeches and contributions from the floor. Some absolutely disgraceful stories of cases being refused even though they met the criteria. The motion was passed unanimously and again, I would like to thank all Branches that supported it.

I believe as a Branch we did very well. We ensured the major issues affecting our members were heard on the National stage. Now we need to ensure our top table hold Royal Mail to account and as I said at Conference, not leave Scotland out in the cold. I want to thank all the delegates for representing our Branch at Conference and ensuring our membership were represented to the best of our abilities.

Motion 16

This Conference instructs the Postal Executive to negotiate with the business a strict timetable to uplift new entrants to the terms and conditions of our legacy members, therefore removing the two-tier workforce at the earliest opportunity.

Scotland No.2

Emergency Motion 5

Conference notes, that the geographical and logistical challenges in Scotland mean that, under current circumstances, CWU members in Scotland will be disproportionately impacted by the proposed changes to the Network Window in Scotland affecting their jobs, conditions, earnings, and quality of life. Conference also notes the wholescale failure of the exemptions process conducted by Royal Mail to mitigate these impacts.

Conference also notes, the Scottish Divisional Statement issued on the 19

th of March highlighted the approach of Royal Mail in Scotland in relation to the changes to the Network Window, in which there was a direct threat from Royal Mail in Scotland to move beyond 90 minute changes, impose extensive changes beyond 60 minutes and remove and replace up to 1100 full time jobs if the CWU did not agree to break terms of the BRT&G agreement as well as other material impacts.

The collective result of these means:

Scotland now has much later start/finish times than originally voted on in the BRT&G agreement.

Members in Scotland have been disproportionately affected by the consequent impact on family friendly duties and opportunities.

The threat to full-time jobs and duty structures will result in a material impact to our members’ conditions and Scotland’s quality of service.

Conference notes that Royal Mail has made attempts to mitigate impacts of the Network Window changes in other areas, notably in Northern Ireland, due to the geographical challenges. Conference reminds the Postal Executive that members in Scotland were balloted on the BRT&G agreement on the same parity of terms as members in other Divisions and deserve to be treated accordingly.

Conference therefore instructs the Postal Executive to ensure the same approach to Network Window conditions and exemptions that have been given by Royal Mail as in Northern Ireland, are given to Scotland, to mitigate the changes brought about by it given the geographical challenges and consequent impact on our members’ jobs, conditions and quality of life.

Glasgow & District Amal

Scotland No.2


Highland Amal

Emergency Motion 6

This Conference notes with concern that Royal Mail have concluded the first local stage of the Network Window Exemption Process on March 23

rd. This resulted in a blanket refusal of the granting of requested exemptions no matter the circumstances. This has led to members who already enjoy Flexible Working arrangements being denied the opportunity for continuation.

The exercise appears to have been nothing less than a box ticking exercise. The criteria used to base decisions was never designed to be employee or family friendly.

The process inevitably affected those units which were the most disadvantaged by the network change attendance times. It makes sense the areas with minimal change to attendance times would be much easier to accommodate requests, as opposed to those with much later start/finish times which would be more difficult to resource.

Where local COMs rejected requests, we believe this was taken under instruction from higher level.

Which means those who will hear any appeals have already pre-judged the outcome as it is part of the above wider issue and not going to be judge the cases on individual merit.

This is demonstrably unfair and potentially unlawful due to new flexible working laws.

We would urge the Postal Executive to re-open the process and ensure CWU Representation as part of the joint sign-off in the decision-making process.

The Postal Executive is instructed accordingly.

Highland Amal

Owain Beaumont

Cwu Scotland No2 Branch Secretary

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