Postal workers initiate strike over elevator issues at Central Mail Exchange in Colombo


Employees at the Central Mail Exchange in Colombo have commenced a strike in response to the prolonged malfunction of two elevators within the eight-story building.

The strike, led by the Joint Postal Trade Union Front and supported by the United Postal Trade Unions Front (UPTUF), aims to draw attention to the dire situation faced by nearly 3,000 individuals who frequent the facility daily.

One of the elevators, specifically designated for parcels, has been out of order for nearly a year, leaving postal workers to manually transport items beyond the fifth floor.

Chinthaka Bandara, Joint Convenor of the Joint Postal Trade Union Front, highlighted the challenges faced by employees, especially female workers, including pregnant women, who struggle to navigate the building with mail bags.

Postmaster General P. Satkumara addressed concerns, stating that the renovation of the 25-year-old elevators was recently undertaken by a private firm.

However, the upgraded elevator, now managed by the concerned company, has failed to adequately resolve the issue, prompting the strike action.

The United Postal Trade Unions Front announced a 24-hour token strike, effective from midnight on March 10, emphasizing the urgency of the situation.

They warned that if the government fails to address the elevator repair within a month, further trade union action will be taken.

The strike reflects broader frustrations among postal workers regarding workplace safety and operational efficiency.

With the Central Mail Exchange serving as a critical hub for postal services in Colombo, the disruption caused by the elevator issues underscores the need for swift resolution to ensure the smooth functioning of essential services.