Union achieves coats for Royal Mail new recruits from Day One


“Just in time for the colder weather – and about time too,” was CWU outdoor secretary Mark Baulch’s reaction to the news that all new outdoor delivery recruits in Royal Mail will get their coats from Day One of their employment as part of their uniform allocation.

The union has been pushing hard for some time to achieve the Day One entitlement, with coats previously not being allocated for the first six weeks’ employment.

“We’ve felt for a long time that this is unfair,” said Mark, “and we’ve had Annual Conference policy on this matter as well.”

Motions from branches in 2016 (South Central Postal), 2017 (York & District) and 2018 (Portsmouth & District) have consistently brought up this shortfall in uniform allocation to new starters, Mark explained, adding that the outdoor department has been pursuing this matter equally consistently.

The agreement that has now been reached amends the Code Of Practice Between Royal Mail & The CWU On Dress Standards (Revised Uniform Agreement 2018), a change which Mark says is “long overdue and long-awaited.

Dave Joyce, the union’s national health and safety officer, has also been working hard to ensure all new recruits receive these coats and he said: “Getting new starters their appropriate cold and wet weather clothing before going out on delivery in severe inclement, wet and cold weather has always been an issue raised every winter by CWU branch area and unit reps – and not surprisingly, the recent weather which has seen very heavy rainfalls across the UK and falling temperatures has again triggered enquiries to the health, safety and environment department.

“I’m pleased that efforts have at last been rewarded and the decision has finally been taken to change business policy and that the standard weatherproof, storm-proof coat is now to be issued to all new recruits from day one as opposed to week six,” Dave Joyce added.

Looking more broadly, Mark Baulch describes this achievement on uniform as “a step forward in the way our new starters our treated and supported on delivery and builds further on other positive developments in new entrant training and support.”

The coat itself is materially in accordance with PPE standard, but the wearing of the coat is not subject to mandatory PPE regulation, Mark clarified, adding also his thanks to postal executive member Darren Glebocki for his “tireless efforts” in this matter.