USPS Attendance Control Crackdown 2010

District Managers

SUBJECT: Attendance Control Programs

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently conducted an audit of the Postal Service’s attendance control policies and procedures. The report concluded that supervisors have failed to comply with Postal SeiVice policies and procedures regarding unscheduled absences and recommended the following three actions: provide refresher training to supervisors, establish and implement internal controls to evaluate and ensure supervisors compliance, and mandate the use of the Enterprise Resource Management System.

We have continually discussed on performance telecons the lack of accountability around the attendance control programs within your districts and the negative impact unscheduled absences have on finances and service. ThiS report only reinforces what we already know. Accordingly, the following actions are required effective immediately.

All newly promoted supervisors will be provided classroom leave control training within 90 days of promotions and refresher eLearning training to seasoned supervisors as described below beginnIng this quarter.

Employees’ absence analysis (form 3972) must be reviewed each quarter by every immediate supervisor’s manager.In the initial review, if it is determined that inadequate corrective action has been taken by the supervisor, the supervisor shall be required to take/repeat the eLearning course. If the supervisor fails to address irregular attendance in subsequent quarterly reviews, corrective action will be taken. Records must be maintained to ensure continued compliance. As the District Manager, you will be required monthly to submit to me a report of your performance with respect to attendance control and actions taken to correct
deficiencies of managers/supervisors under their control. Your first report is due in my office February 1, 2010 and should be broken out by POOM area and plants.

Finally, all supervisors and Labor Relations Specialists will use the eRMS System and maintain all corrective action and grievance information within the system for review. There shall be no exceptions to this requirement.

Terry Wilson

source: PostalReporter reader -Terry Wilson is VP Area Operations, Southeast Area. Terry Wilson suddenly retired at the end of this month. Linda Welch is taking over February 1st. The attendance crackdown is probably happening nationwide

29 thoughts on “USPS Attendance Control Crackdown 2010

  1. I have a letter from Greg Bell APWU Business Agent concerning Medical Documentation Requests for absences of 3 day or less dated 8-27-07. And a response letter from John Dockins USPS Manager Of Contract Administration (APWU) 9-10-07, in which he does NOT dispute APWU’S postition that requests for Medical Documation for 3 Days Or Less, CANNOT be requested UNLESS the employee is on RESTRICTED SICK LEAVE! Medical Documentation also cannot be requested in cases of ALLEGED charges of ABUSE OF SICK LEAVE and EXCESSIVE USE OF SICK LEAVE.

    These letters can be used by NALC and Mail Handlers and other crafts in cases since all USPS employees are covered by the same ELM Attendence Regulations.

    For a copy. e-mail me at

  2. Hello Everyone,

    I totally agree with Cindy. She sounds like she may be from the same office I am, or are they all like that. Although, I believe we need, Managers, and Supervisors, 204B’s, it is overkill at some offices. When the USPS thinks of downsizing again, hopefully it will start at the top of the ladder, or at least midway! That will ultimately save more money than cutting the carrier or clerk positions.

  3. Well, I am fairly annoyed at the whole sick leave issue. So I am pretty much going to work sick. I have developed major allergies / reactive airway disease which causes recurrent upper respiratory infections and the dust -that does not exist in the postal service- really aggravates it. I am doing everything in my power to deal with it (allergy shots , etc) but with some other issues it is annoying.

    So I say to you: Malicious Compliance !

    Cough in your hand. Use all door knobs especially managers. Be sure you cough each time you open/close the slide on a DBCS. Cough on the doors when you open then for jams. Feel free to fondle a mouse; cough on a keyboard. Shake hands often. Then laugh as you infect 10 people and 5 KMA club members bang out rather than your one. Oh and if you can get away with it french a supervisor

    Manager: So Tommy be sure you bank your sick leave because one day you might have a severe health problem and you will need it – like if you are in a car wreck and break your neck

    Tommy: Oh gee, you are right Dick. I sure would not want that but you see I keep having this nightmare: I am driving to work and I have an awful car wreck. As I am laying in my car bleeding to death and reviewing my life I suddenly realize , just as I pass out, I could have called in sick.

    If you’ve heard it good for you if you have not I hope you enjoy it.

    (909) 987-XXXX
    GUILLERMO MOJARRO Claimant-Appellant
    Case No. XXXXXXX
    Issue(s): 1256
    Date Appeal Filed: 01/12/2010
    EDO: XXXX BYB: 11/01/2009

    Date and Place of Hearing(s):
    (1) 04/12/2010 Rancho Cucamonga

    Parties Appearing:
    Claimant, Employer

    The decision in the above-captioned case appears on the following page(s).

    XXXXXXXX XXXXXXXX, Administrative Law Judge

    Case No.: XXXXXXX Inland Office of Appeals
    CLT/PET: Guillermo Mojarro
    Parties Appearing: Claimant. Employer
    Parties Appearing by Written Statement: None
    The claimant appealed from a determination disqualifying the claimant for unemployment benefits under Unemployment Insurance Code section 1256. The issue in this case is whether the claimant left the most recent employment voluntarily without good cause.
    The claimant was employed as a Distribution Clerk. Level VI, for 22 years with the above-named employer earning $52,000 per year when his employee on October 30, 2009 under the following circumstances. The claimant resigned and accepted early retirement.
    The claimant has a long, complicated history of grievances with his employer. The relevant portion of that history begins in February of 2007 when he was suspended for inappropriate conduct towards a co-employee. At the end of that brief suspension, the claimant informed the employer that he was not emotionally prepared to return to work. The claimant’s physician verified the claimant was unable to work because of his depression and anxiety. The claimant did not return to work before resigning on October 30, 2009 to accept his early retirement.
    In February of 2009n the claimant requested to be returned to work. On March 26, 2009 the employer notified the claimant in writing that he was required to provide “objective and specific medical documentation sufficient to establish that you are able to perform the essential functions of your position, with or without accommodation…” before the employer could return him to employment. In response to this directive the claimant submitted a four-paragraph correspondence from his treating psychiatrist, Dr. Harry G. Lewis. The correspondence detailed the claimant’s condition, diagnosis and prognosis.
    At the hearing the employer’s psychiatrist confirmed that this correspondence from Dr. Lewis “technically” satisfied the employer’s request for detailed medical documentation. Despite complying with the request, the employer did not return the claimant to his employment. Instead, it demanded that he submit to examination by the employer’s physicians. The claimant asserted his privacy rights and prevented the employer-appointed psychiatrist from sharing his
    opinions with the employer. The employer refused to return the claimant to his position. The impasse was not resolved until the claimant became eligible for early retirement, which he then accepted.
    In Precedent Decision P-B-37 the appeals board held that in determining whether there has been a voluntary leaving or a discharge under section 1256 of the code it must first be determined who was the moving party in the separation. If the claimant left employment while continuing work was available, the claimant was the moving party. If the employer refused to permit the claimant to continue working, although the claimant was ready, willing and able to do so, the employer was the moving party.
    An individual is disqualified for benefits if he or she has been discharged for misconduct connected with his or her most recent work. (Unemployment Insurance Code, section 1256.)
    Absence caused by illness does not constitute misconduct. (Precedent Decision P-B-216.)
    The department’s determination that the claimant was the moving party in this separation of employment is incorrect. The claimant had been out of work due to a psychiatric condition. The leave from work was approved by the employer. The claimant’s psychiatric issues were resolved according to the claimant’s treating physician, thereby opening the way for him to return to employment. The employer refused to permit the claimant to continue to work since it had not received a medical report from its own physician concerning the claimant’s medical condition. The claimant was ready willing and able to return to employment. Accordingly, the employer’s refusal to return the claimant to employment was the reason the claimant was forced to take early retirement, and thus the employer is the moving party in the separation.
    The claimant was not discharged for misconduct connected with his most recent work. The absence from work was due to psychiatric medical condition. The employer approved the leave, and appropriately demanded medical verification that the claimant was capable of returning to his employment. According to the employer-appointed psychiatrist the claimant’s treating psychiatrist’s written release “technically” complied with the employer demand. Nevertheless, the employer refused to return the claimant to work.
    The absence from work for a medical condition is not misconduct. The claimant was cleared medically by his own physician to the satisfaction of the employer’s written policy, and should have been returned to work. The employer’s refusal to return the claimant to work may have been for good cause. However, the decision not to return the claimant to his position was for reasons not amounting return the claimant to work may have been for good cause. However, the decision not to return the claimant to his position was for reasons not amounting to misconduct by the claimant. Accordingly, the claimant is not disqualified under code section 1256.
    The department’s determination is reversed. The claimant is not disqualified under code section 1256. and benefits are payable provided the claimant is otherwise eligible.

  5. I hate people who call in sick for no reason except a mental health day!!! Get up off your lazy ass and get to work!! I am a carrier

  6. Sick leave is like having money in the bank, I had an injury off the clock and I had enough sick leave to cover my absents for 8 months. Some of my coworkers use their sick leave on a regular basic and when they had taken sick they were force to use leave with out pay (LWOP) for several months. When you call in regular you also put your work load on your coworkers.

  7. How the hell are we going to be denied a benefit that we earn. If we are not allowed to use our sick leave then why is it even given to us. My postmaster jr. was dumb enough to post something by the time clock saying if your sick dont come to work, but as soon as you call in sick your ass is hauled into the office and disciplined. Hello can we say mixed signals, but what can you expect from people that bark orders at you and have no freaking clue as to how the operations even work. They only know from what they see other people do they have never actually done the job.

  8. Here’s a good one for you all!!! How about this, I know this firsthand …a management person retires who will remain nameless, receives $4500 per month with all the perks of management in his retirement. Then gets hired back by the postal service as a contract employee making at least $25.00 per hour and is told by his boss to give himself a raise and to decide on their own how much per hour more they should get. So this retiree, hired contractor, gave himself a $5.00 per hour raise (he could have given himself more, he thought of $10 per hour) because he didn’t want to seem too greedy. The Post Office wants to get rid of the working craft employees (20%), should really look at the management positions which have increased by 2% (where most of the Post Office’s monetary problems are). Why are there four supervisors (1 for 4-5 clerks, 2 (204b’s) & 1 (Supervisor) for 28 mail carriers. So on that’s 70k for one supervisor, 70k for another, and 55k for each 204b = $250,000 to supervise 33 craft employees. Does anyone see a problem here?

  9. I have a question about OIG and Managers who take care of their personal busy while on the clock is that part of the crackdown also.

  10. I definitely agree with the statement that the Postal Service is on it’s way out. Management is spending way too much time thinking of ways to get rid of craft employees and not about providing good customer service. My office just got the “supervisor from h***”, a total control freak, 1 week ago, and she has single-handedly turned our office into a hostile workplace . I’ve already been threatened with discipline 3 times and I’m a hard-working reliable 25 year veteran employee. I’m thinking that USPS’s goal now is to force out the people who didn’t take the voluntary early retirement last year, to avoid paying retirement benefits. Anyone else having similar problems?

  11. Linda Welch is former District Manager from Dallas Texas. We are glad she is in the Southeastern area now. Good luck

  12. anybody notice that the post office is on its way out?? morale has never been potter is pissing off not only the craft employees -but supervisors as well.why not just fire all employees and start from scratch?? but make sure you start at the very top .thats where all the dead weight is thats bringing us down.

  13. To: I think you are all stupid on Sun… You must not have a hard job. I think that mail carriers have the hardest jobs of all. Yes you are right in that if we don’t like it quit and go get a job at McDonalds. I can tell you this, any carrier works hard for their money and earns every bit of it and deserves more…. You must really be in lala land. We deal with so much more than the average person. Maybe you should go and work at McDonald’s or not be on this reading if you don’t want to hear people vent. Or maybe it would just be better for you to be the one that someone goes postal on…really use your head…read what is going on. USPS workers (not management) are having a hard time right now and are trying to protect and keep their jobs. We are here to do our jobs, not cover up or try to make our bosses jobs look good. And if management doesn’t know how to cover routes, other jobs, etc. It is their problem don’t dump it on others. We should all stand together in Union. Do your job safely no matter what!

  14. you people are all so stupid. if you dont like the rules at the post office go down the street and get a job at f$#^ing mcdonalds. but oh…then you will have to give up you $25 an hour to bitc* and whine. guess i wouldnt do it either. what a bunch of overpaid cry babies.

  15. Who is going to control Management’s attendance? They come in and leave whenever they want. Do they actually use their leave time when they’re not at work? They work around their families schedules and the postal service is second.
    They get their car fixed, go to the Dr’s and run their errands all during the work day.
    If we could all do that, we wouldn’t need sick leave or annual leave either. Or we could save it all up as the managers do.

  16. I’m in an office in SE district that is following this “rule” and have been given a letter of warning for using my leave. One time it was for being sick. I had a sinus infection with a trip to the doctor and several pieces of documentation and that wasn’t enough. I said, we have a stand up that says if we have flu like symptoms NOT to come to work …. My supervisors says that’s only if you have the H1N1, I say how do you know if you don’t go to the doctor? The second time of unscheduled leave was when I had a car wreck, my car was totaled went to the ER, but since I called in on a Monday (the accident happened Saturday) it was in conjuntion with my day off. I had the ER report, pictures, nope not acceptable documentation. What are we supposed to do?

  17. Corrected spellingsfrom the previous post, its late.
    1. or major medical problems.
    2. Don’t stand for them…
    3. you made an improvement….

  18. First, Nobody controls your attendance but you. Second, FMLA is the best way to protect yourself. Third, Learn how to use your sick leave. What I mean is, you need to spread out your use if your using S/L as personal time. Don’t continue to bomb out on the same day. Mix it up. S/L is a benefit for you to use and if you learn how to use it, you’ll be able to slide under the radar, When I finished my first ten years I had 4 hours sick leave on the book, no write ups and major medical problems.
    When you supervisor calls you in and talks to you about your attendance and he/she goes back 3, 6, a year back in his review, tell him thats how long it’s going to take you to better your attendance. told stand for them reviewing your 3972 for the last year then letting them write you up if you bomb out two month’s later. If they review a year, then thats your standard to correct, a year!
    Your stewards need to be dilligent on this point. More likely than not your supervisor will shorten your review period when you argue that your reviewing the past 3, 6 months or a year of attendance so thats how long its going to take to make it better. If they go back only 3 months, then give yourself some thing to work with, If you call 3 days in the last 90 then only 2 in the next 90, you made an approvement, you should be argueing that that is how he records it, and then get a copy. With them saying you made an improvement, that shows your trying and better for you in the grievance procedure.

  19. Don’t try comparing yourself to your supervisor, as it’s the same thing as comparing yourself to another employee. The statement will be “We’re not talking about them and I’m not free to discuss what’s happening with them. We’re here to talk about you.” The people who live in glass houses doesn’t work with a company who hires its own lawyers and insures itself.
    Make sure your absences are FMLA protected. Having your doctor complete that paperwork is going to be more important than ever in protecting your job. If your absences are not FMLA protected or scheduled, you should be at work. For those of you who no longer qualify for FMLA protection due to insufficient workhours within the previous year, I suggest coming to work sick.
    If you think you’re off the hook because you’re supervisor is sick a lot, you’re sadly mistaken. Your Postmaster will be held accountable to do the Supervisor job in their absence. It will be “do it, or we don’t need you.” Additionally, the supervisor will also be a target to see if the Postmaster is taking action with them. I know of 6 Postmasters who were fired this year in my district, and 6 in the neighboring district are on Admin leave pending removal for not being in their office when their boss checked.
    I believe the theory is that if you’re too sick to be at work, then you better be sick enough to have to go to the doctor and the doctor better agree. Otherwise, the US Postal Service needs you every day.

  20. MR. Wilson, was formally a “Custodian”. Of course he used his FMLA and burned his S/L before he left. You don`t become an area VP without knowing how to work the process!

  21. “Records must be maintained to ensure continued compliance.” Just another program that will start up and then go away in a few months. No one ever follows through on these directives.

  22. What about the supervisors attendance. Some are always running late or just not making it to work and scene they do not have to clock in or out they have perfect attendance. When was the last time you know of a supv. getting an unscheduled absence?????

  23. That would be great except my “immediate supervisor” hasn’t even been in this year! Like they say, “People in glass houses”……..

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