USPS and NALC, Mail Handlers Agree To Extend Contract Negotiations To Dec. 7th

Outcome Critical to Postal Service, Employees, Future

WASHINGTON — Although the contracts with the National Association of Letter Carriers, AFL-CIO (NALC) and the National Postal Mail Handlers Union, AFL-CIO (NPMHU) expired at midnight Sunday, Nov. 20, the Postal Service and the two unions agreed to extend the negotiations deadline until midnight, Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2011.

The NALC represents more than 195,000 employees who work as letter carriers delivering mail primarily in urban areas. The NPMHU represents more than 45,000 employees who work in mail processing plants and Post Offices. Respectively, wages and benefits for NALC- and NPMHU-represented employees exceeded $15.7 billion and $3.5 billion last year. Should negotiations fail, a process begins which could result in a third party determining contract terms and work rules for approximately 240,000 employees.

Unlike the private sector, when negotiations come to an impasse, postal employees are not permitted to strike as Congress has designated the Postal Service as an essential service to the nation. An arbitrator determines the final outcome and is not legally required to consider the Postal Service’s financial obligations when rendering a decision.

Mail volume peaked in 2006 at 213 billion pieces. The effects of the shift to digital communications coupled with the impact of the recession resulted in mail volume plummeting more than 20 percent to 167.9 billion pieces last year. Over the last four fiscal years, the Postal Service reduced its size by 110,000 career positions and saved $12 billion in costs. Expenses, however, continue to exceed revenues in part due to an overstaffed workforce.

The Postal Service ended Fiscal Year 2011 with a net loss of $5.1 billion, compared to an $8.5 billion net loss the year before. The 2011 loss would have been approximately $10.6 billion had it not been for passage of legislation that postponed a congressionally mandated payment of $5.5 billion to pre-fund retiree health benefits.

To become financially stable, the Postal Service needs to cut approximately $20 billion in costs by 2015. Some of these cost savings can be achieved by adjusting the size of its workforce and infrastructure to align with America’s changing mailing trends.

While actions under Postal Service control are making a difference, passage of comprehensive legislation is needed to give the Postal Service more flexibility in making business decisions and the ability to react quickly to changing market conditions.

The Postal Service successfully negotiated a contract with the American Postal Workers Union (APWU) AFL-CIO that expires May 20, 2015. The APWU contract achieves short-term cost relief, long-term structural changes and enhanced workforce flexibility. Employees represented by the APWU work as clerks, mechanics, vehicle drivers, custodians and in some administrative positions.

Negotiations with the National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association (NRLCA), which expired Nov. 20, 2010, came to an impasse and will follow the current agreement until a third party determines the outcome of a new contract. Employees represented by the NRLCA deliver mail in primarily rural and suburban areas. The NRLCA represents more than 65,000 career employees and nearly 42,000 non-career employees who substitute for career employees on their days off.

For additional background information on labor negotiations visit this link.

18 thoughts on “USPS and NALC, Mail Handlers Agree To Extend Contract Negotiations To Dec. 7th

  1. Both unions got the new contracts already printed up, their just going through the motions like a lot of wifes due with their husbands.

    Jump around keep it fun 🙂

    Spot on post m. comerford VOTE ALL THE INCUMBENTS OUT IN EVERY ELECTION!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. m. comerford. Unfortunately, it was the unions that pushed the 2006 PAEA . From the NALC website: Postal reform campaign and other labor and industry officials also attended the ceremony, which was the fulfillment of NALC’s top legislative priority. Also from the NALC website, the Bush administration tried to inflexibly earmark 100 percent of escrow savings for retiree health benefits”. As you see, had the union gone with Bush’s earmarking the csrs overpayment, we might not be in the position we are in today. So be careful on jumping on the bandwagon from the left or right. That’s all Suckas

  3. Hey Congress
    How bout we just get rid of Management, they don’t do the Work, but they get all the money. I know being a carrier, that I don’t need anybody to tell me what to do, it’s pretty simple, DELIVER the Mail. We have people who are making 90k walkin into our office to check for “Sleepers” Really ! is it a crime that you forgot 1 piece of mail when Management is hiding mail and fudging #’s all day Everyday. is this how you justify your 90k, by stupidity such as that.. OH Yeah they probably get a 15-20 K bonus depending on how many Carriers they screw..
    Supervisors are a waste, half have never even carried mail. This is someone who is going to tell me how to carry mail.
    When will Congress just wake up and listen to the WORKERS, check out management and their waste and Stupidity, get rid of them and in probably 2 years we’ll be back in the black..

    Wouldn’t it be better to pay Carriers Overtime to DELIVER mail, then pay 3 times as much to some ignorant , Asshole to tell us to curtail it !!!!!
    OH WAIT SORRY Thats the Postal Way, and I guess Congress buys into it !!!!

  4. Not happy with APWU? Occupy them at 1300 L Street in Wash DC or better yet, if you can’t come up with round-trip tix to Wash DC…it’ll do to fill out an 1188! Do it before the impending dues increase and assessments coming round the bend!

  5. they want to give you the same pile of sh*t the apwu got
    beware of NTFT
    remember to go to the light not the dark side.
    NTFT is the the dark side where they will abolish 50% of your bid jobs
    and replace them NTFT bid jobs which you are force to bid on, or be
    unassigned/unencumbered mail handler and placed where they want you.
    you may keep the no layoff clause, but then the post master general
    will try to get the congress to do away with that.
    what can you say about the post master general who wants to sell off the post office
    piece by piece, and members of congress who want to privatize the post office

  6. I would rather be screwed by a arbitrator than my own union!! You would think the national knows this considering how mailhandlers reacted to the apwu contract.




  9. For 50 years of me I have fought
    Ordering neurons and synapses of thought
    Desperately trying curiosity prying
    To discover public opinion is bought

  10. i think nalc and mailhandlers are wasting their time. how can they
    possibly trust or believe anything donahoe and his cronies propose?
    did they not witness donahoe’s behavior with the apwu, “agreeing to a contract then almost immediately going to congress to have THEM throw out the
    parts of the contract that donahoe didn’t like?? fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me. after reviewing donahoe’s past behavior, i would not believe one word that exits his pie hole! run to arbitration nalc and mailhandler unions!!!! run, baby run!!!!

  11. 1st dads the president then the son, and another son thinking hey maybe three times a charm, WTF.

    Watch both Unions give it up like the APWU did and the Negotiations with the National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association get the third party best new contract.

  12. Mr. Boston, you are correct. However, if we simply remove the word Republican, M comerford is correct also. I suggest we remove the word Congress and substitute these words. Overinsulated Fatheads, Self aggrandizing Narcissists, who will vote for anything that looks good, and help them get reelected!! Ignoring any long term problems their vote may cause! The American Public, all to often have the memory of a fruit fly. No ONE is held RESPONSIBLE. No wonder congress is all too often a lifetime job. The most recent and most terrible proof of this is their overwhelming vote to invade Iraq. They sure looked good voting for it. Notice M comerford I have not used either word REP. or DEM. I strongly support my suggested substitution for the word Congress. VOTE THE BUMS OUT. YES! There are thousands more BUMS hovering like BUZZARDS to take their place.

  13. Sure, blame President Bush. The bill passed the house by a vote of 410 to 20. It passed the Senate unanamously. The Unions and the PO supported the bill, the only reservations voiced were on the levy for veterans retirement benefits.

  14. The above represents half truths and out and out lies.
    The real truth is that the Post Office WAS financially stable until the Republican Congress under Bush, the job out-sourcer, passed legislation preventing the Post Office from using it’s own profits for it’s own expenses. It made the Post Office bank this money for “future retiree health benefits” which no other private company or corporation does because it is a poor financial practice.
    Further, NO other federal agency was forced to do this but the Post Office! WHY? ?
    Prior to 2006, when the Republican congress passed this legislation; the Post Office was in excellent shape, even as the recession started, because they had been downsizing all along while integrating, through attrition, labor saving mechanization.

    In my opinion, this alleged financial crisis has been another political effort to destroy middle classx jobs and replace them with lower paying ones so the Post Office could be sold off to private corporations.
    Congress, bought and sold again.

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