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Dave Ward: Technology is ‘being used to control workers’

by Marcus Barnett
in Bournemouth

POSTAL and communication workers are increasingly voicing concerns about managers using technology to exercise greater control over them, CWU general secretary Dave Ward said today.

“All through my working life I have always had to deal with bad and sometimes bullying managers,” he told delegates at the union’s conference.

“What’s different now is that the technology those managers have at their disposal is now capable of planning and controlling every minute of the working lives of our members.

“The way that technology is now being used to control workers is perhaps the biggest challenge we face at work.”

He called for a national union campaign to harness workplace technology for positive ends, such as boosting the trade union movement, rather than it being used in a way “that is not right for workers.”

Mr Ward said: “By harnessing our collective strength we can shape the future world of work, reverse the fortunes of the trade union movement and bring about transformative political change.”

He also hailed the “new and clear progressive direction” that the CWU has taken over the past four years.

He said that the union was getting “closer and closer” to its rank-and-file representatives while gaining prominence in the wider working-class movement.

Paying tribute to the union’s members, he said that the CWU has “set aside a narrow and insular view of trade unionism” by actively engaging its members in political, social and other industrial issues.

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