APWU: Dispute Over Assignment of Unassigned Regulars to NTFT Schedules Denied

Arbitrator Das Sustains APWU Grievance on Denial of Retreat Rights

APWU Web News Article 79-2012, July 2, 2012

In an award issued June 29 [PDF], Arbitrator Shyam Das sustained the APWU’s grievance over the denial of excessed employees’ retreat rights, but denied it in a dispute over the assignment of unassigned regulars to non-traditional full-time (NTFT) schedules.

The issue in the first case (Case#Q11C-4Q-C11322494) was the USPS’ refusal to permit excessed employees to retreat into NTFT duty assignments posted for bid subsequent to the conversion of part-time regulars (PTRs) and part-time flexibles (PTFs) in August 2011.

Arbitrator Das rejected all of the Employer’s arguments, finding that “[t]here is no contractual provision that supports the Postal Service’s action in precluding employees from exercising [their] retreat right until initial local placement of converted part-time employees was completed.”

Noting that the Postal Service failed to raise, let alone obtain the Union’s agreement to, such a restriction on the right of excessed employees to exercise their acknowledged retreat rights during negotiations, Arbitrator Das determined that the Postal Service’s unilateral determination to disallow the exercise of retreat right under these circumstances violated the Collective Bargaining Agreement. The issue of remedy was remanded to the parties and the arbitrator retained jurisdiction to resolve any remedial disputes.

The issue in the second case (Case #Q11C-4Q-C11322481) was the USPS conversion of PTRs and PTFs in August 2011 to unassigned regular status with temporary NTFT schedules.

Noting that this case raises complex issues, Arbitrator Das concluded that in the particular context of the “unique circumstances” of the August 27 th, 2011 conversion of some 9,000 affected converted PTRs and PTFs to full-time status pending initial establishment of a significant number of NTFT duty assignments, those converted employees had “no significant basis for complaint since they could be assigned under the NTFT MOU to residual NTFT duty assignments with equivalent schedules and had no reasonable expectation that they would, or would not, be placed in traditional schedules upon their conversion.”

The arbitrator reasoned that on the record of this case, “ it is reasonable to conclude that — although not specifically addressed in the NTFT MOU or other written agreement –- the parties during their negotiations contemplated that the Postal Service would have established NTFT duty assignments before it was required to convert PTs to full-time. Stated differently, the parties did not contemplate that there would be an interim period between conversion and establishment of NTFT duty assignments…”

As a result, Arbitrator Das continued, “[w]hile the parties did not expressly provide for [the conversion into NTFT schedules] in their agreement, they did not…contemplate the situation in which this arose.”

Noting that “the converted employees were not being directly converted into NTFT duty assignments to the possible detriment of other employees who might have exercised their seniority to obtain such assignments” and that the USPS began to post the newly established NTFT duty assignments within a month or two, Arbitrator Das denied the grievance.

14 thoughts on “APWU: Dispute Over Assignment of Unassigned Regulars to NTFT Schedules Denied

  1. Im a ptr clerk that was unassigned…now that the grievance was denied I got a notice that im doing dual job and will also do carrier as well as clerk..

  2. i am a tour one automation clerk. i kiss the ground every day to have this job.
    i work hard and get all the over time i can. thanks to the apwu, this should continue. be greatful to be a postal employee. i am!!!

  3. Watch those mailhandler vacancies created by their exodus become landing spots for affected clerks and….watch any clerk hope of a VERA go up in smoke thanks to your “leadership” at 1300 L Street NW Wash DC!

  4. What a bunch! Here’s to another 200 and whatever years of postal employees service to the country.

    Many thanks on this fine 4th of July Holiday!

  5. Forrest you are totally correct in your staements. APWU created benefits for employees that would never come to exist as management wants the most it can get without any compromise, Thanks to APWU over the years promoting employee right s, workplace treatment,benefits and pay increases.

  6. APWU wins again! Thanks to the APWU, we now have larger lockers and they’re holding out for $50,000 in order to approve an early out. What a bunch! I’m looking forward to the next dues increase and assessment! I’m so happy Goofy will be able to retire on that APWU Officer Only Retirement Plan that my dues pay for but that I can’t use! He deserves it and so do every APWU steward and officer.

  7. Another victory for the Goofy regime. After his first 3 years in office we’ll have lost approx. 120,000 jobs, and the 2nd largest cost of living raise. Just what is he hiding under his beard?

  8. OK APWU, what’s up with the early buyout incentives? You’ve been awfully quiet about that

  9. Forest,
    I agree with you 100%. Everyone else.
    Nowadays, where can you work in the private sector for over 30 years and not get laid off, especially during a recession. Ignorance (lack of knowledge) does causes narrow mindedness. Why do people think that the Post Office is invincible to the recession ; some of the changes that are happening we caused it our very selves. We all know that there are so many employees(from various crafts) that has (is ) taken advantage and abuse their career jobs as a postal employee. I shouldn’t have to make a laundry list of them. Just because you pay your dues is still not enough for you to take your job lightly. You have to empower yourself to be involved and educate yourself on the issues that are at hand on a local and national level. If we did not have an union fighting for us, you would be fired because of your work performance wasn’t up to management’s standards, no overtime, cheaper wages due to lack of education, reduction in hours, etc. There are a lot people who has lost everything because of the recession economy be appreciative of what you have if not someone else will. As you noticed the mail volume has considerable decrease because several factors but has your pay decrease? have you been laid off because of less work? I am just saying.

  10. The only thing union officers are concerned with is union dues so they can live well. Holding office means they do not have to work but can laugh at those that do work. There are a few with an IQ low enough to be brainwashed into believing the APwU actually is a good thing!

  11. Pat Critelli,
    Nobody was screwed by the APWU, and neither were you. Read your contract. Nobody forced you to leave your FTR position. You never won a grievance in 30 years? You must be very educated about your contract. Paid dues for nothing? Really? Job security for 30 years? Nothing? $25 an hour? Nothing? 5 weeks vacation a year? Nothing? Lots of sick leave? 5% matching on your TSP? Plus a basic annuity? Workroom floor rights? Seniority rights in bidding jobs? NOTHING? REALLY? ALL OF THESE THINGS, AND MUCH MORE YOU HAVE THANKS TO THE APWU! I am sick of all you out there always WHINING about being mistreated by the APWU. You are ignorant and ungrateful. You make me sick. Just quit your job and go to work at Lowes. Better yet, go into management. And that’s all I have to say about that.

  12. Unlike Arbitrator Das im going to side with Pat Critelli.

    My ruling is fuck both the union and the post office.

    Is that more like what everybodys feeling?

  13. Wow, That is so messed up. Just another example of arbitrators being in bed with management when it comes to money awards. All part time regulars where sold out by the union we where full time regulars who went part time only to have the union create nft full time jobs locking us in to less then forty hour jobs. Off course management created thirty hour full time positions what made the union think they would create anything more. I have thirty years in and never received one dime in any grievance submitted. And BY THE Way paid full time union dues all the time i was part time. Thanks union for shafting us part time regulars !

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