The strike before Christmas

13 December 2016 | Billy Thompson

Strikes among companies are quite a common thing.

But today in the news three large firms have gone on strike and the timing couldn’t get any worse, what with Christmas being just around the corner.

Post Office is one of the companies where staff will be striking. It is said that that at least 4000 workers are expected to be taking part in the strikes. Over 300 stores will be affected, some closing completely.

What an absolute nightmare! Any time in the year workers from the Post Office go on strike would cause mayhem but a few days before Christmas?! (Strikes are starting on December 19th and will run up until the 24th). This is sure to disrupt lots of Christmas gifts from being posted.

Another firm to strike today is Southern Rail. The train drivers at the company have walked out for a 48-hour strike, with another 24-hour strike commencing on Friday.

The strike will leave around 300,000 regular passengers without transport. This has affected lots of jobs what with the lack of staff and even forcing some commuters to partake in journeys of up to 11 hours.

Some staff from Argos have also announced that they will be striking. The strike is coming from a group of delivery drivers.

Argos is a go to for many when buying Christmas presents. The strike will definitely affect many customers and cause a lot of outrage when they can’t buy their last minute presents.

Of course, there is a reason workers from these firms go on strike. The majority of the time it is to do with pay or work hours. We have to remember that behind the big brands there are everyday working people who want to be treated fairly in their job, just like you and I.

But sympathy and support is reduced somewhat when you recognise that they’ve planned their strike for maximum disruption – which is a bit harsh on the public who have nothing to do with their dispute. Surely they can strike in a less frenetic period? I understand they want maximum impact to affect their bosses, but they’d get more sympathy if they didn’t ruin thousands of people’s Christmas plans by leaving it until the New Year.

But of course, this is a PR nightmare for these big-name brands too (and something the strikers will have aimed for). Not only are they disappointing their customers this Christmas, but it also shows that they have HR issues with their staff.