Union Vows to Escalate Fight To Preserve Postal Service

APWU members vowed to escalate the fight against the Postal Service’s plan to eliminate Saturday mail delivery on the fourth day of the union’s 20th Biennial National Convention, unanimously approving a resolution to engage in “rallies, marches, and pickets” in concert with other unions and public interest organizations. The declaration also denounced the “forced relocation” of postal workers and other USPS attacks on employees.

Paul Felton, a member of the 480-481 Area Local, spoke in favor of mobilizing union members for legislative rallies. Recalling a demonstration many years ago, he said, “What I remember most about the trip to Washington was not the effect we had on [former Rep.] David Bonior, but the impact we had on a group of employees and members that came with us and went back on the workroom floor and spread the word.”

“I believe these mobilizations are valuable for the effect they have on our membership,” he said.

Delegates to the convention unanimously adopted a special resolution honoring APWU President William Burrus for his service to the union and named him President Emeritus of the American Postal Workers Union on Aug. 26.

Delegates also approved a resolution that would allow the Postal Service to use its $75 billion overpayment to the Civil Service Retirement System to offset the requirement to pre-fund the retiree healthcare obligations. A bill to fix postal finances (H.R. 5746), which was introduced by Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA), would achieve this goal.

The convention also adopted resolutions considered by the Maintenance, Motor Vehicle, and Support Services conferences.

In other convention action, delegates approved a measure to engage in “more meaningful action” to oppose the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and support our troops. “We demand our nation keep its promise to our veterans by ensuring they are afforded quality jobs with living wages” and that service-connected medical conditions be recognized without requiring veterans to take extraordinary measures to prove the connection, the resolution said.

Gary Kleiboeker of the Illinois Postal Workers Union, who lost his son in Iraq, spoke in favor of a resolution against the war.

Delegates also voted to oppose Arizona’s controversial immigration bill (S.B. 1070), and to support comprehensive immigration reform.

Delegates to the convention unanimously adopted a special resolution honoring APWU President William Burrus for his service to the union and named him President Emeritus of the American Postal Workers Union on Aug. 26.

more APWU convention news

6 thoughts on “Union Vows to Escalate Fight To Preserve Postal Service

  1. ANYMAN123: You didn’t say anything that disproved, or even made a prima-facie case that I was wrong in any way. I’ve been a Union steward and activist for over 12 years now. That is exactly how the grievance procedure works – PERIOD! Just as you might have a grievance w/ a company in which you’ve both agreed to settle all disputes through arbitration, to avoid lengthy and costly court costs. Your premise that the Union’s get what they want from management and arbitrator’s by threatening to file more grievances to back log the system is absurd. BTW – were already back logged more than you could imagine. I would actually argue that management seemingly likes back-logs. By the time most grievances get to arbitration, they are moot for some reason or the other; e.g., employee died, retired, whatever. As for many of your comments, I fail to see a relationship to my previous comment. You seem to have some deep seated ill-will towards Union’s. Maybe you would like to elaborate on that.
    I’m really dismayed why there are so many Union bashers on these blogs. It’s seems as though a lot of people arive at conclusions based on a simple premise, or two. Just because you have a few Union reps you do not like or care for, doesn’t make all Union reps garbage. Remember, Union reps are in the same boat your in. Why would I wish to sink your boat if I’m in it with you?

  2. Zack, Now you know that is not true. Union due threaten to file grievances to clog up the system when they are mad and employees at the P.O. Due feel like they derserve more that others while doing less. This isn’t always true but it does happen on a regular basis. If regular worker didn’t feel the pier pressure coming from the unions who threaten them just like management and call them scabs even when they are members because they don’t agree with one’s opinion you would hear more of it or you are walking around with blinders on. And the clerk union was canvasing mailhandler union members to see if they could combine the two but no one wanted to give up power. The very same power we claim management yeilds. Neither president or anyone below them wants go give up their position to the other union. Thus we bicker with each other and we are divided. So many in tought times have so much negitivity towards the jobs that they have had the blessing to keep while Americans are struggling every day with no pay or benifits. We should think about this more.

  3. The union is not what it used to be. A stewart used to have to be a model employee. Now he just has to be anti management. They file over anything and always ask for money. Arbitration is a JOKE.

  4. GREGORY: In response to your opinion, it is certainly ignorant of FACTS! You make it sound as if the Union’s simply ORDER the USPS to pay someone undesevered compensation. This conclusion of yours is unsupported by any FACTS! For your enlightening, the Union files a grievance – solely based on FACTS! If management disagrees, they deny the grievance, and it goes before an Arbitrator, who renders a decision based on FACTS!
    If management agrees, then they will do the same, based on FACTS! Thus, if FACTS dictate an employee gets paid, then the FACTS speak for themselves, and no one received a dime that was undeserved! THOSE ARE THE FACTS! If you believe the USPS paid someone something for nothing, well then, your anger should directed toward USPS management, or the Arbitrators. Union’s do not have the final word in the outcome of grievances. Postal Management and/or Arbitrator’s do. If you cannot grasp the aforementioned, you are doomed to be an idiot for the rest of your sorry existence.

  5. Union officials and members alike need to be reminded of the source of the word, “union.” It originates from the Latin “unio”, which meant “oneness.” Later derivations include “unity” and “unify” – both of which signify a JOINING TOGETHER of diverse concepts in an effort to become a single harmonious entity. So I ask all you union protagonists this simple question:

    WHERE IN ALL OF THE APWU AND NALC RHETORIC IS THE UNITY YOU SO VOICIFEROUSLY PROCLAIM? Virtually since their inception, these so-called champions of workers’ justice have utilised a divide and conquer attitude when resolving their labor issues. It’s ALWAYS been an “US-against-THEM” approach that has prevailed in every single major conflict btween the rank-and-file and USPS management… and it’s cost us both dearly. What a shabby prostitution of the word, “unity!”

    It has cost the USPS financial structure millions upon millions of dollars in grievance settlements arising from petty little squabbles hurled by workers who [through the union structures] feel they are entitled to receive more than they are reasonably due… such as receiving pay while sitting at home doing nothing because they were somehow “slighted” in a work schedule. And: it doesn’t really matter whether there is a union contract to support their claims… to receive compensation for work not done is simply dishonest and without a single shred of human integrity. And this is how the pervasive influence of the postal unions has cost the individual workers. Union members have become a herd of mindless sheep being relentlessly corralled by a pack of snapping NALC and APWU hounds.

    This attitude of being able to receive something for nothing has corrupted the work ethic of the postal rank-and-file to the point we now find ourselves: while teetering on the brink of survival, we have divisive unions openly [and proudly] demanding their minions march forth in protest to divide and conquer once again, ignoring the basic premise of “an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay” – and ethical man or woman needs a union representative to explain what that phrase once meant, and should still mean today.

    Of course: it’s possible I’m under-estimating the integrity of the average union member.

    I hope it.

    And I doubt it.

Comments are closed.