Burrus: “Postal Workers Will Not Settle for Less”

APWU Web News

America wants to keep Saturday delivery, and we will beat back this proposal to lock the mailbox on Saturday,” APWU President William Burrus told delegates to the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) biennial convention in Anaheim, CA. “We join with NALC in pledging ‘five day, no way.’”

Speaking at the NALC’s 67th biennial national convention on Aug. 12, Burrus told delegates that the APWU stands with the NALC in opposing the Postal Service’s plan to eliminate Saturday delivery.

“Potter’s not going to get five-day delivery,” Burrus said, referring to the Postmaster General. “We’ve been in that fight, we oppose it, and we’re going to beat him,” he said.

“How can he have the audacity to tell the American public you can’t receive mail on Saturday?” Burrus asked more than 7,000 delegates in attendance. Ending six-day service would undermine the Postal Service’s exclusive access to citizens’ mailboxes, he said.

Burrus also discussed the similar challenges the APWU and the NALC face because of the Postal Service’s difficult financial situation: Low mail volume; a continuing effort by management to cut costs; job losses; the fight to save Saturday delivery, and pressure for concessions in upcoming contract negotiations.

“I have read and heard the suggestions of some that we must be willing to grant concessions, to which I reply: My members are deserving of more,” Burrus said. “We will not negotiate less of anything.”

Burrus pledged to fight the USPS proposal that if negotiations enter interest arbitration, the arbitrator should be required to consider the financial health of the Postal Service.

“Every arbitration begins with Exhibit #1, the financial health of the Postal Service,” he said. “What they want to do is put their finger on the scale of workplace justice.”

“Free collective bargaining means free collective bargaining,” Burrus said. “Postal workers will not settle for less.” Burrus reminded delegates that collective bargaining gives postal workers “a seat at the table.”

“This is what we asked for,” he said “The chance to speak for ourselves.”