Limassol postal workers held a one-day work-stoppage on Thursday after receiving new directions assigning them with additional responsibilities which they said were unclear.

The district’s postal service is faced with a long-standing understaffing issue while the last new hire was over a decade ago.

Gathered outside the district post office, a representative of the workers Antonis Panayi told reporters that a new circular issued by the directorate and distributed on March 24 to those in charge is the reason behind their strike.

According to him, the circular refers to new tasks postal workers would undertake such as the delivery of parcels, apart from letters. Panayi said the weight of those parcels is not specified, while workers are also against the fact they will be required to take a photo of them to prove that they have delivered them.

“We have an excessive workload, we have been understaffed for several years. It’s been since 2010 since the last recruitment,” Panayi said.

He added that there is also a serious safety issue with the delivery of parcels.

“We can’t carry extra workload on our motorcycle. Our physical integrity is at risk. The management has been informed of these requests for several years but there has been no response.”

Meanwhile, he clarified that the intention of the distributors was a two-hour work stoppage but they were, he said, threatened and so they decided to go for a one-day work stoppage.

“We have no problem taking on extra duties as long as we have proper information, security conditions, [and] recruit new staff,”

For Panayi, who represented the postal workers, there is also the issue of age. “They can’t have demands on a 65-year-old delivery person to perform as he did at the age of 25,” he noted.

As a result of the strike, no post will be delivered in Limassol on Thursday.