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Royal Mail: Industrial Disputes

Volume 502: debated on Wednesday 9 December 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what assessment he has made of the effect of the industrial action by Royal Mail employees called by the Communication Workers Union on small businesses in (a) Vale of York constituency, (b) North Yorkshire and (c) England; and if he will make a statement. (305224)

It is clear that industrial action by Royal Mail staff will impact on those customers that heavily rely on Royal Mail services and we are aware that many small businesses throughout the country use postal services on a daily basis.

The Government want to see a successful outcome to the discussions between Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union under the agreement of 6 November and we welcome the appointment of Roger Poole, former Assistant General Secretary of Unison and Chairman of the Parades Commission for Northern Ireland, to independently oversee the process. It is important that both parties keep talking until an agreement is made on the way forward on the next phase of modernisation, which everyone accepts is vital for the future of the company.