Postal union ends strike, but resumes work sanctions

The 7,000 workers are demand that the government lower bulk-mail rates, allowing the company to compete with private entrepreneurs.

post office.88 (photo credit: )
post office.88
(photo credit: )
The union of Israel Postal Company employees decided Sunday night to resume sanctions they applied last week instead of the full strike that shut down postal services on Sunday. The 7,000 workers are protesting the government's failure to lower bulk-mail rates so that the company can compete with private entrepreneurs in distributing hundreds of thousands of letters at a time. The workers claim that by not allowing the new state company to be competitive when it loses its monopoly in delivering bulk mail, many of them will be fired. Diplomatic mail will not be distributed; mobile post offices will not operate; regular post office branches will close early (3:30 p.m. at large branches and 1:30 p.m. at smaller ones); and postal banks will not accept payments into government accounts. However, postal agencies, which are owned by contractors rather than postal employees, continue to function normally in areas where they exist. The National Insurance Institute said that NII allocations could be collected at these agencies Although the sending of letters by individuals is falling into disuse due to e-mail and faxes, the use of postal branches continues. The Internet has significantly increased the ordering of products mailed directly to consumers. In addition, postal banks are widely used because they do not charge the fees demanded by commercial banks; thus many self-employed people go to the post offices on the 15th of the month to make their Value Added Tax payments and recipients of NII payments to get their money.