Editorial: This “Breather” Can Kill Your Job

The PMG’s big announcement of a new Network Consolidation Plan appears to offer relief to many postal employees when in reality it is another management delayed ploy.

The reality is this “revised timeline” has three phases disguised as two (typical postal math). On August 11th 48 Plants impacted by Phase 1 will have hundreds of employees involuntarily reassigned.

In February 2013 92 more plants will begin excessing hundreds more employees with hundreds more to follow a year later. But those are only processing plants. Hundreds of post offices will be closed through this year impacting more postal workers!

“Whew , my job is safe!” NO it is not! The PMG and some members of Congress are still clamoring for lay offs not just reassignments of excess employees.

The Final Rule on Service Standards changes the PMG is imposing will undermine the service we provide America and will eventually lead to the demise of the postal service. The goal of many corporate and Congressional entities appears to be to privatize the postal service. If this happens your job is gone!

The fact is this multi phase elimination of plants and jobs is NO TIME to take a breather!

Management continues to spew the lie that 80% of postal costs is due to labor. It is actually down and they fail to confess that a good chunk of the actual 77% is attributable to management salaries (including bonuses etc.)

Management blames our wages, health plan coverage, our life insurance coverage, our retirement plan. In reality they are blaming the problems at USPS on YOU!

Because you are 80% of their problem management developed and presented a 5 year plan to reduce full time employees and here is their break down:
2012-2013 Reduce 51 thousand jobs
2013-2014 Reduce 17 thousand jobs
2014-2015 Reduce 11 thousand jobs
2015-2016 Reduce 10 thousand jobs

In 2011 management got rid of 68,000 jobs. So their plan is to get rid of 155,000 jobs in 5 years. Yours is likely one of them! So it is NO TIME to taker a breather.

Does Seniority Count

Because the new Network plan will be done in increments although your seniority (if you are senior) does offer some relative protection BUT MAYBE NOT MUCH! Here is why:

When the 1 st wave of forced reassignments occur the most junior employees in the installation will be impacted. The residual assignments available may be more desirable at the time so that by the 2nd move date the less desirable jobs may be the only placement opportunities that exist.

Also, when you factor in the closure of several hundred post offices, other tour realignments and
schedule changes, Actually no time to pause- You aren’t SAFE!

Function 4 (retail) and Function 1 (mail processing) reductions, Function 3b (maintenance) and 3a (MVS) who knows where the more senior employees may end up. This is a reality! So there is NO TIME for a breather!

Take a quick gulp of air and make immediate contact with your Congressional Representative (filing grievances is not going to stop the PMG!). Go to apwu.org click the Contract Your Legislators
link, put in your zip code and compose/send an email and a print a letter and mail to your Congressional Rep. Ask them to oppose HR 2309 (which will impose lay offs, gut your seniority rights and hurt your benefits, undermine service, impose more bureaucracy etc.). Or you can look up the phone number of your Rep.s’ field office and call direct or better yet pay the office a visit.

It does not matter if you are a Republican, Democrat or an Independent! What matters is that you are a postal worker and a concerned member of the community. Have your family members, co-workers and friends make contact too and stop the PMG!

You see if you do not take the time out now to act now your job will truly run out of breath- and then IT WILL BE TO LATE!

By Omar M. Gonzalez, APWU Western Regional Coordinator

note: This article is scheduled to be published in an upcoming Local California APWU  newsletter

22 thoughts on “Editorial: This “Breather” Can Kill Your Job

  1. all of this talk and non of it matters, as already said, we will be kept in the dark as long as possible. I still can not figure out why all of the secrets. As a union steward I am looked at as a fool when we have that last minute anounce meeting and the manager says “we are working with the union” Who is working with what union? how many people for how much longer are waiting for the money? get a hint the mdo has a sign on her door, “would the last person who leaves turn out the light”

  2. Omar…you’re a legend in your own mind. When and if APWU ever downsizes, will your job be safe Omar? Or will coordinator jobs be replaced with individual state presidents handling your tasks and, if so, will you be taking the APWU Officer Retirement?

  3. When the hell are you going to ask your congressperson to find out where the money is going???? You union”leaders” never ask about NO-BID contracts with FED-EX woryh several billion dollars yearly,just to transport (fly) mail. Broken down thia comes to over 1.40 per pound !!!! OUTFUCKINRAGOUS..commercial would cost about .35 – .52 for the same service. PLEASE LEADERS GET YOUR COLLECTIVE HEADS OUT OF YOUR ASSES and see where the money is actually going

  4. CrookNoBallsGuffey on Thu, 24th May 2012 3:11 pm

    Believe the offer to Mail Handlers is partially the in your face to the APWU, and seeing how the APWU is ratcheting up for the big convention, they may just let it all slide , what’s more important, you or the big party in LA?
    May be offer, but no Moola for you, Guffey feels you will not go, what an asshole!

    Tell me what you’re thinking…

  5. My P.O.forming out locally express mail hiring peope to off the street to deliver it paying them between 13 &14 Dollars and hour plus mileage! I ask the postmaster did the new hires have a truck to deliver parcels around christmas time they didn’t know, all expresss mail want fit in a car ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha what abunch of idiots.

  6. Stop the ploys and games, the post office don’t stand a chance against emails and fax machines. Come on let it go, even Omar said send a email before he said print and mail a letter..The facts are there, just like landlines and pay phones went out because of cell phones..and the post office is going down because bills are going paperless because of computers and technology..It is so much easier to pay online or on the phone..People want easy and they are going to get it..
    It is safe to say soon the post office will be like UPS..parcels only..will they get more than UPS I don’t think so. They have been doing it longer..so UPS may be stronger..They do work together now so maybe this is the only way to do it.
    Sorry it is falling, but the USPS keep giving raises and overtime for no reason.
    You got a big bill coming and this is what you do..Give Me A Break!

  7. hey lets all vote for Obama because he is really interested in saving the post office …. not a word from him no action no leadership no comments on the view nothing and when you multiply nothing by anything you still get nothing. thank you mister president for nothing. congress should be ashamed of the way they are handling the so called postal crisis. i am on my third facility and million dollar buildings are sitting vacant, loss of revenue pooey, these richard craniums don’t have a clue.!!!! what about trucks that run hundreds of miles with one container of mail, new business model, delay that one container three days across the the country and viola one billion saved DUMMIESYOU WILL NEVER WORK FOR PRIVATE INDUSTRY!

  8. I do not want to be negative. But, I agree with all of the above. Except, it’s actually worse than stated. When Function 4 arrives at your office, do know that they are there for one reason (slash and burn ALL JOBS). They will eliminate all unnecessary jobs, plus 50% of the remaining necessary jobs. If your position is eliminated, you will be excessed to letter carrier, another office, or possibly a part-time position. However, you will be kept in the dark for as long as possible about your future. Then, if you are VER eligble you will descretely be offered an early out w/o incentive. I took the VER six months ago, because I did not want to be relocated every six months like my fellow co-workers excessed one year ago. I would not have minded carrying mail (I think), except HR came to our office and informed us that “Veteran’s Preference means you can not take a lower level job, but will be excessed further than any other employee up to 750 miles”. I am thankful that I was offered a VER, even w/o the incent..

  9. I also feel misrepresented by the APWU, but if you are not aware of this let me share a little fact about the APWU that may interest you: *All members of the APWU with 25+ yrs of membership are eligible for the “25 YEAR LIFETIME MEMBERSHIP REWARD OF $250. In order to receive this reward you must obtain and provide a copy of your union anniversary date “SEGMENT E” form which must be printed directly from the “EMPLOYEE MASTER RECORD”, which you may request from the USPS/HR Shared Service Center, but my manager was very instrumental in promptly obtaining this document for me. Please do not rely on your steward, as I was given the wrong info. it only delayed the payment process, (and we know why employees get involved with the union, for the same reason employees sign up for mgmt positions, they don’t want to work). Once you obtain a copy of your union anniversary date “SEGMENT E” form – fax it to the Secretary – Treasurer of your Local Union. For the Miami Area Local fax it to the attn of: Kevin J. Baker, Secretary – Treasurer at 305-591-5975 **I received my check via US MAIL in approx 1 week. T.O.O. -Miami, FL 7:12 a.m.

  10. The EO and the Incentives and who knows what?,Congress, specifically the GOP side, may be delaying any action and/or will delay action on Postal Reform bills, until after the PMG has accomplished some of the reform by himself, that Omar Gonzalez (APWU)swan song (on Postal Reporter) tells me that the APWU is taking a stand, unfortunately the APWU stand is like “Custer’s Last Stand”,Chief Donahoe is raising that tomahawk, and USPS will take no prisoners, we are being scalped,this is a Massacre in the making.
    Many are waiting for a Congressional solution, also known as “The Final Solution”.

  11. Isnt it amazing how the USPS continue to cry about its losses in revenue. Everyday, we’re losing X amount here and so many millions there and yet, we have never received a single penny from the US Government. If the USPS was a fortune 500 company, it would rank 26th in the world. Therefore we’re not as broke as led to believe. With a the conversations surrounding the financial losses, the FINANCIAL GAINS are being completely overlooked. Any other corporation sustaining these assumes losses would have folded by now. Remember the 75 million dollars in excess (pre-funding). By all means vote accordingly, just vote for those who support your best interests…

  12. What day is it? Has groundhog day come an gone yet? Who’s Omar? What day is it? Did i ask that already? What happened to cola’s? Who am i? Did jesus come back yet? Is this the Twilight Zone?


  13. Stop electing those unqualified people into office. Get rid of the current staff of union reps. Old farts need to go. Just like the old farts in congress & the senate. Having an affirmative action guy in the white house have been nothing but trouble for this country, your jobs, and the rest of the world.
    OMG = O-bummer MUST GO!

  14. There goes Omar talking again, just like the other union reps., all talk and no help for the members. Have any of you met Omar? Drama king. All talk, no help. Unions only collect your dues money and give it to support the demon-crats, so jobs are not protected, just a sell out of the members. Union could care less what happens to the employees, as long as they hold on to their paying union positions. Just like the current president in the white house, he could care less what happens to the citizens, as long as he can continue with his uggggh wife to free load off the taxpayers. Guffy agreed to the dumbest contract, he’s not qualified to be a union president, much like the white house president – both are NOT qualified. Now… a little news for those employees who thought it was “funny” and “laughed” at their co-workers who were sent out on NRP… what goes around, comes around!!!! – who’s worrying about being sent out the door now??????

  15. Hey Omar
    As a postal worker and ex union member I’m disgusted with both organizations. Postal management is slowly destroy the business and the APWU basically is helping them by agreeing to that fucked up contract. What the hell was Guffy thinking. I say fire the PMG and Guffy

  16. You no get VER, you go down with ship, you shits, how can Omar keep job, I am like king, you shits must stay and be tormented, you sink with me!
    All is lost so make sure all is lost!

  17. Politcal chess game. Craft and management unions goal is self preservation regardless as to the meanse to achieve. Monatary losses and any means too operate cost effective means nothing as loosing 25 million dollars a day only continues their pay, benefits, and members dues.
    Management and politicians play the odds. Management goals is to reduce services, close officies and reduce employees. This the key to outdated company which demand for its services has declined resulting quarterly billion dollar losses
    The salaries of these postal royalsmust be reduced or eliminated. The recent hiring of a Ccola exquistve to compete in the market place with online origins destinations is questionable. Politicans only motive for any action is the return in party favortism and vote for the suporting.
    Blane Capital had to be restructured and operations make cos effective to be successful. USPS could linger in present loosing mode for years and when enough
    employees demise an agreement to maintain operations will be concluded. Monatary losses are eternal but USPS IS A GOVERNMENT SERVICE. Who really cares as Debt means nothing..

  18. hey omar…..should apwu members also write their state and local
    apwu bureaucrats and ask them why the apwu ‘leadership’ sold them out
    in the last contract? you and i both know that the last contract sold
    out current apwu members so that the apwu could unionize the casuals
    under the new term pse’s (pse = unionized casual ). you are correct that
    apwu member clerks have the potential to really get screwed over if they
    are in the 2nd or 3rd tier of excessing as all the jobs may be gone. however, i think you are going to have some very furious apwu members when they find out that the gaining installations keep the just hired pse employees while the
    incoming excessed longtime union members are left with the scraps or
    nothing at all. was this an oversight of apwu ‘leadership’ or just raw incompetence?????

  19. Oh, yes, and in response to Devon Charles. I totally agree, it is far to gone to save it now.

  20. How many letters to your representative does it take? I have noticed in the Northeast it is those reps who spoke the loudest whose district P&DC’s did not close (on this round anyways) If a plant has been studied, and it translates into saved revenue, and the approval to close has gone through. How in the world did it suddently NOT save money to close when a politician starts rallying? Its all in the politics, and most likely, after election year, those plants which were saved in phase 1 will also meet their demise in the next phase. Letters have been written to our local reps. Nothing, nada. What more can you do? What ires me is that politicians are only interested in protecting their jobs during this years campaign and wont make any decision on the postal reform until after then. Really? That seems safe enough to me. But what about the rest of us? I’m thinking of voting out who ever IS in office. Forget what they promise you in the beginning, its all smoke and mirrors.

  21. Postal unions don’t seem to comprehend that the postal collapse is beyond its control.

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