- James Meek, In the Sorting Office
London Review of Books - 28 April 2011 - l'auteur :
L'article intégral en ligne :

L'écrivain a enquêté sur la poste néerlandaise. Il décrit un service dégradé et des salariés malmenés, l'envers d'une privatisation sans durabilité et d'une compétition fort peu rationnelle.

Comment ils ont tué la Poste
Traduction en 6 pages par Courrier international, à lire en bibliothèque - 1103-04

Extraits :
Concurrence ?
« In the Netherlands, as in Britain, the postal market has been liberalised in the name of the consumer, as Europe’s former citizens are now known: competition, it is said, will benefit everybody. But competition, as Leijten noted, only really exists for large organisations. Private citizens can’t post letters in Sandd or Selekt mailboxes. There aren’t any. Ordinary Dutch people still have to pay 46 cents to send a TNT letter. The Dutch government, meanwhile, has negotiated a deal with Sandd to deliver some of its mail at 11 cents a pop. ‘For ordinary people, there’s no choice, there’s only TNT,’ Leijten said. ‘The postal system is sick ».

Une guerre fraticide
« Every week Dutch households and businesses are visited by postmen and postwomen from four different companies. There are the ‘orange’ postmen of the privatised Dutch mail company, trading as TNT Post but about to change their name to PostNL; the ‘blue’ postmen of Sandd, a private Dutch firm; the ‘yellow’ postmen of Selekt, owned by Deutsche Post/DHL; and the ‘half-orange’ postmen of Netwerk VSP, set up by TNT to compete cannibalistically against itself by using casual labour that is cheaper than its own (unionised) workforce. TNT delivers six days a week, Sandd and Selekt two, and VSP one. From the point of view of an ardent free-marketeer, this sounds like healthy competition. Curiously, however, none of the competitors is prospering ».

Désarmement unilatéral
« What the Germans did was not so different from what the Dutch did: they tried to protect their decently paid former state postmen from low-wage competition in their home country, while setting up networks of low-wage private postmen to undermine the former state post in the country next door ».

Petits boulots. L’art de dénigrer le travail des salariés.
« Sandd promotes the job as a ‘bijbaan’, a bit of work on the side for somebody who wants fresh air and exercise and already has a state pension, is studying or has a salaried husband ».
un exemple de factrice : « She works, she reckons, about 30 hours a week for the two companies, earning about five euros an hour, although the legal minimum wage in the Netherlands is between eight and nine euros an hour. She has no contract. She gets no sick pay, no pension and no health insurance… » 

Le retour du droit et du social ?
« While I was in the Netherlands, the Dutch parliament’s pressure on the low-wage postal companies, which had been building for years, finally forced them to make a deal. In the small hours of the morning they agreed with the unions that by the end of September 2013, 80 per cent of all postal workers in companies like Sandd must be on proper contracts, meaning they gain some degree of social protection ». Un responsable ajoute : « Yes, we underpaid, if you want to call it that, in the same way that others did. From early on we said when others agree to come to a labour agreement we will follow. We would not take the lead ».