Royal Mail Group (LON:RMG) has won an injunction in London’s High Court preventing an upcoming strike. The move came as the Communication Workers Union (CWU) recently served notice for a two-day walkout later this month, after failing to agree on pensions with the privatised postal operator.
Royal Mail’s share price has been steady in London this morning, having added 0.05 percent to 387.50p, marginally outperforming the mid-cap FTSE 250 index which has slipped into the red and is currently 0.05 percent worse off at 20,240.28 points. The group’s shares have lost more than 21 percent of their value over the past year, and are down by some 16 percent in the year-to-date.
Royal Mail wins injunction
Royal Mail announced in a statement yesterday that the High Court had ruled that dispute resolution procedures had to be followed, meaning that any strike action before that would be ‘unlawful’. The company noted that it would now contact the CWU “as a matter of urgency” to kick off the process of external mediation, with the first step being selecting a mediator acceptable to Royal Mail and the CWU from a panel agreed by both parties.
The move came after the union recently said that it was planning two days of industrial disruption at or after 11am on Thursday, October 19, to before 11am Saturday, October 21. The strike would have been the first one since the postal operator’s privatisation.
The CWU meanwhile noted in a statement that it was disappointed with the High Court ruling, calling Royal Mail’s actions “nothing more than a desperate delaying tactic”.
“We will use the mediation process to seek an agreement but also to galvanise support amongst our members and the public,” CWU Deputy General Secretary Terry Pullinger commented, adding that if “Royal Mail Group are not serious about reaching an agreement we will not hesitate to call strike action immediately after the mediation period closes”.