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General Secretary Dave Ward called it a “watershed dispute.”

He added: “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 member’s terms and conditions and improve the range of services on offer to customers.”

The Royal Mail is closing its defined benefit pension scheme which guarantees a level of income in retirement, saying it is “unaffordable.”

Royal Mail insisted the strike action would be “unlawful” as dispute resolution procedures have not been exhausted.

“We are committed to further talks as a matter of urgency to reach agreement with the CWU. There are no grounds for industrial action. We want to reach agreement.”

The Post Office is a separate business from Royal Mail and will not be affected by a strike.

Date set for 48 hour postal strike

6 Oct 2017

Royal Mail workers are to stage a 48 hour strike later this month.

Some 89% of staff who took part in a Communication Workers Union (CWU) ballot voted for the action following a lengthy dispute over pensions, pay and job security.

The national stoppage starts at 11am on 19th October.

Royal Mail threatened to use all legal options including applying to the High Court for an injunction to prevent industrial action.

The CWU said workers are “extremely angry” and accused bosses of moving away from the “spirit and intent” of agreements and the “empty promises” of privatisation.