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David Morrison: "Egyptian postal strikers are an inspiration

On 7 August 2007, 3arabawy posted a letter written by one postal worker activist in solidarity with the Egyptian postal strikers. The letter quickly became so popular amongst many socialist activists in Egypt, who translated it into Arabic. The story of the letter was published in the independent Al-Dostour Newspaper.

Here is what David Morrison the writer of the letter had to say about it all.

"I read about the Egyptian postal strikers in the Socialist paper. Their story was very inspiring. The fact that they stood together regardless of the police threat and at the end get what they want was just inspiring. So I automatically sent the Egyptian workers that email …

"I am amazed at the response the letter got. I now go into my email and I find many emails from workers in Egypt.

The Egyptian postal workers, with the threats they faced, they are an inspiration for us all"

 

With similar problems across the world, I asked Morrison how he felt about international solidarity, he responded:

"I believe we should have more contacts with the postal workers across the world"

 

The postal strikers in the UK have now been suspended until 4 September 2007 as negotiations are now taking place.

Morrison says that the union has two demands:

"The Royal Mail to recognize our union, which means they have to negotiate with the union before any decision is made. Jobs are being cut without even discussing with the union. And the Royal Mail has to respect all national agreements regarding modernization … now they want to bring these new machines which will mean the cutting of 40 thousand jobs"

In addition to these two requests, the postal workers want a reasonable pay rise.

"The new Prime Minister had decided to attack us by giving us a pay rise that is 2% below inflation rate".

It is surprising that the postal union has to go through such a hassle to protect the rights of the postal workers in the UK. According to tradition and for historical reasons related to the early British labour movement, trade unions have been paying a political fund to the Labour Party. The Postal Union still pays this fund despite demands by members to put an end to these funds.

"We want to pay MPs who support us not those who want to push us out of our jobs", Morrison asserted.

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