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Breaking News


Mar 12, 2020

We Have a New Union Contract!!

Retroactive Back Pay and COLA Awarded

March 11, 2020

The big news is in – 200,000 postal workers represented by the APWU have a new union contract!

Neutral Arbitrator and Interest Arbitration Panel Chair Stephen Goldberg issued his binding decision on the terms of the new union contract between the American Postal Workers Union and the United States Postal Service.

The Award was the product of 20 months of preparation, member and local union input, negotiations, mediation, a strong contract campaign and a well-prepared and presented arbitration case. Thirty-two workers testified about their work. Officers and subject matter experts testified for the union. A team of economists presented our case and rebutted management’s presentations for union concessions.

“No interest arbitration is ever totally in favor of one side or the other,” said APWU President Mark Dimondstein. “But we have achieved a number of our major goals including retroactive annual pay raises, maintaining of full (and retroactive) COLA, narrowing the gap between the lower and higher career pay scales, the career conversions of thousands of PSEs and maintaining tremendous job security. We should all be proud to be union!”

“We also succeeded in stopping management’s deeply concessionary demands to end no-lay protections, increase percentages of non-career employees and create a new lower third tier of career employees,” shared Industrial Relations Director Vance Zimmerman. “I want to thank the many officers, witnesses, staff, attorneys, specialists and the members for their many efforts in this long battle that helped bring it to a strong conclusion.”

Unless specifically changed by this Award, all rights and benefits in the previous contract carry forward into the new one. These include seniority and bidding rights, protections against unjust discipline, the grievance procedure, annual and sick leave, holiday and overtime pay, health and safety protections and so many of the important rights and benefits won over many decades of struggle.

Click here to read the full award. Below, after the video, are the highlights and significant changes contained in the Award.  

LENGTH OF CONTRACT

  • Three Years: September 21, 2018 to September 20, 2021

CAREER EMPLOYEE GENERAL WAGE INCREASES

  • Three annual general wage increases totaling 3.4% over the life of the Agreement.
  • 1.3% effective November 24, 2018 (Retroactive)
  • 1.1% effective November 23, 2019 (Retroactive)
  • 1% effective November 21, 2020

COST-OF-LIVING ADJUSTMENTS (COLA)

Semiannual COLAs for career employees will continue under the current formula. Management pushed, but failed, to convert COLAs into one-time lump-sum payments.

  • $624 or $.30/hour COLA will be applied retroactive to August 31, 2019
  • $166 or $.08/hour COLA will be applied retroactive to February 29, 2020
  • Future COLAs will be applied in September 2020, March 2021 and September 2021
  • COLAs to date add $790 annually or $0.38 per hour to base pay.

The APWU is now the only postal union that has protected and maintained full COLA.

INCREASED COMPENSATION – GENERAL WAGE PLUS COLA INCREASES

Adding the 3.4% in General Wage Increases plus the known COLAs, compensation for a level 6 Step O employee will increase $2,855 over the life of the Agreement. With three additional COLA increases, the total increases over the life of the Agreement will likely come to $3,600 annually, an increase of about $1.75 per hour. In addition, those not yet at the top step of the lower career wage scale will gain new step increases with each Step representing an approximate $.50/hour raise.

STEP INCREASES

APWU argued for the return of higher steps to the lower tier schedule. In response, Arbitrator Goldberg narrowed the gap in the two-tier career pay schedules by adding additional top steps in Grades 5-8 for employees hired after May 23, 2011 (There is no lower tier for Grades 9 and above).

  • Grade 5: One additional top Step Increase (Step K).
  • Grade 6-7: Two additional top Step Increases (Steps K & L).
  • Grade 8: Two additional Step Increases (Steps L & M).
  • Depending on Grade, each additional step increase approximates $1,000 per year based on full-time straight-time hours of work.

PSE WAGE INCREASES

Since PSEs do not receive COLAs, they receive larger annual general increases:

  • 2.3% effective November 24, 2018 (retroactive)
  • 2.1% effective November 23, 2019 (retroactive)
  • 2.0% effective November 21, 2020

PSEs will receive an additional forty cents per hour raise as follows:

  • $.20 per hour effective May 23, 2020, and
  • $.20 per hour effective May 22, 2021.

Over the life of the Agreement a Level 6 PSE pay will rise from the $17.19 to $18.69 per hour.

NO LAY-OFF & JOB SECURITY PROTECTIONS

  • The no lay-off protections of Article 6 for career employees with more than six years of service remain unchanged. Management argued for increasing the six years to 15 years for current employees with no protection for future hires.
  • In addition, no lay-off protection is extended for the life of the Agreement to all career employees on the rolls as of the date of this Award who have not yet qualified for protection under the six-year rule.
  • A ban on subcontracting of any existing PVS driving work during the life of the contract.
  • No employee can be excessed out of an installation beyond a 50-mile radius.

CAREER EMPLOYEE HEALTH BENEFITS

The FEHB Health Plans and benefits remain in effect for career employees.

  • No change in employee share of premiums in 2019 and 2020.
  • In 2021, the USPS contribution level for health premiums will be reduced from 73% to 72% and then remain the same in 2022. 72% is the share federal agencies pay for federal employees and the Postal Service pays for annuitants and EAS employees. This 1% shift represents a cost to an employee of between $75 and $165 per year depending upon health plan options.
  • The USPS contribution level of 95% of the weighted average to the APWU Consumer Driven Health Plan option will remain in effect for 2021 and 2022.

PSE HEALTH BENEFITS

Improvements in USPS payments of PSE Health Insurance premiums gained in a June 13, 2018 grievance settlement will be incorporated into the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Specifically, the Postal Service will make a bi-weekly contribution equal to 65% of the total premium in the USPS Non-career Health Care Plan for either self plus one or family coverage during a PSE’s initial year of PSE employment. And thereafter 75% of the total premium for either self plus one or family coverage. PSE share of premiums can be made on a pre-tax basis. The Postal Service will continue to contribute 75% of the total premium for PSEs electing the APWU Consumer Driven Plan in FEHB.

WORKFORCE STRUCTURE

  • One-time PSE conversions: All PSEs in 125 work year and larger offices with 30 months or more of service in the installation as of the date of the award will be converted to career. Over 4,000 PSEs will be converted under this provision within 60 days of the Award.
  • Maintenance will remain an all-career workforce.
  • MVS will remain an all-career workforce, and maintain the exception that PSEs may be hired to perform some of any “new work” returned to the bargaining unit.
  • No increase in PSE percentages in the Clerk Craft.

APWU is now the only postal union that has not increased non-career percentages.

UNIFORM & WORK CLOTHES ALLOWANCE FOR ELIGIBLE EMPLOYEES

  • 5% increase  in the uniform and work clothes allowance in 2020.
  • 2.5% increase in allowances in 2021.
  • Compression socks, gloves and overalls will be covered as available items for purchase.
  • Full uniform allowances for eligible Clerk PSEs will now be incorporated into the CBA. Similarly, any “new work” MVS PSE meeting eligibility requirements would be entitled to a full uniform.

WORK ENVIRONMENT

  • The Union and Management established a joint task force to address hostile work environments.

WORK RULES

  • For the first time, pregnancy is now included in the Non-Discrimination language of the CBA.
  • The Filling of Residual Jobs Memo, which since March 2014 has led to 70,000 PSE conversions to career, continues in full force.
  • Arbitrator Goldberg reaffirmed that custodial positions should be fully staffed. However he changed under certain conditions what hours apply in calculating “Line H” violations of staffing. Hours associated with long-term absences and excessing events can be exempted from calculations when fully staffed.
  • Improvement in maintenance training selection.
  • PSE overtime rules from a June 13, 2018 settlement will be incorporated into the CBA; specifically, time and one-half after eight hours of work in a day and double time over 10 hours in a day or 56 hours in a week.
  • Small Office Local Memorandum of Understanding is renewed.

The union and management are meeting to determine the exact dates when the new pay rates will be reflected in the paychecks and the date when workers will receive the backpay retroactive checks. 

The national APWU will be printing and mailing an updated version of the new union contract to every member as soon as possible.

JOIN THE CONTRACT TOWN HALL CALL

Join the APWU Contract Town Hall Calls at 11 AM and 7 PM on Tuesday, March 17.

The Arbitration Panel, Chaired by Arbitrator Stephen B. Goldberg, has released the Interest Arbitration award.

Don’t miss the news, sign up for our town hall calls from APWU to hear the terms of our new contract. The town hall call will run twice to ensure that all members have an opportunity to hear the terms of the new contract directly from Industrial Relations Director Zimmerman and President Dimondstein. We will dial out to all members who sign up for APWU town hall calls.

Sign up for the Town Hall and select the times you would like to be called.

By submitting this form, I give permission to American Postal Workers Union, AFL-CIO to contact me via live, automated or prerecorded calls, text messages or emails to my telephone number and email address that I entered above. I agree to APWU's Privacy Statement. I understand that my telephone service provider may impose charges for these contacts and that I can revoke this authorization at any time by using this form.

JOIN APWU TOWN HALL CALLS


Mar 11, 2020

APWU Cancels Commemoration of 50th Anniversary of the Great Postal Strike

March 10, 2020

Due to the concerning and rapid developments surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic and related health and safety concerns regarding travel combined with government advice on avoiding large gatherings, the APWU has cancelled the 50th Anniversary of the Great Postal Strike commemoration that had been scheduled for NYC on March 28, 2020.

We will move the celebration to the APWU National Convention in August.

A strike commemoration brochure will be mailed out to every local and state organization by the end of the week.

The national APWU is producing a new anniversary strike video which will be available soon.

The national leadership thanks NY Metro Local President Jonathan Smith and the Local Officers and staff for their diligent efforts and hard work in planning the event as the host Local.


Mar 09, 2020

APWU Celebrates Women's History Month

March 6, 2020

The APWU honors the contributions of American women in shaping our nation in March, during Women’s History Month. "We celebrate the achievements of every woman who has supported organized labor and the progressive movement for social change," said APWU President Mark Dimondstein, “Every day, women make significant contributions to the APWU. We urge all female union members to join their ranks and get involved.”

The APWU National Executive Board adopted a proclamation to honor the women of the APWU throughout March, in celebration of Women's History Month. It recognizes the “unique and powerful role” women have played in the APWU and in society.

The proclamation reads:

     Whereas, the great contributions of American women in shaping our nation are observed in March, during Women’s History Month;

     Whereas, March 8th is International Working Women’s Day celebrated the world over;

     Whereas, women of every race and ethnic background have been in the forefront of every major progressive movement for social change;

     Whereas, women have played and continue to play a key role in the labor movement;

     Whereas, women have played a unique and powerful role in the American Postal Workers Union, therefore be it

     Resolved, we encourage all locals and state organizations to pay tribute to women during Women’s History Month for the contributions they have made in our continuing struggle, and be it further

     Resolved, we encourage all locals/states to organize and participate in International Working Women’s Day events.


Mar 05, 2020

APWU Meets with USPS on the Spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19)

March 4, 2020

The coronavirus, officially named COVID-19, originating in China, has now spread to over 65 countries including to the United States. The APWU is continuing to monitor the situation and is in constant contact with the USPS about COVID-19. The Postal Service informed the APWU on Feb. 29, 2020, that an employee tested positive for the virus.

Last week, the APWU initiated a meeting with USPS leadership to discuss their response to the virus. On March 2, APWU President Mark Di­mondstein, Industrial Relations Director Vance Zimmerman, the Directors of the Maintenance, Motor Vehicle Service, and Clerk Crafts, and the officers assigned to Article 14 met with the Postal Service and representatives of the other postal unions to discuss the Postal Ser­vice’s response and plans and the unions’ concerns and suggestions.

Postmaster General (PMG) Megan Brennan was pres­ent along with senior representatives of Labor Re­lations, Human Resources, the USPS Legal De­partment, and their incident preparedness team. PMG Brennan discussed with the unions what they are doing to help protect employees.

The Postal Service reported that they are work­ing very closely with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Department of Health and Human Services, and  various state public health agencies around the country to address COVID-19.

STAND UP TALKS & CDC RESOURCES

Employees around the country should have re­ceived multiple “mandatory stand up talks” in­cluding:

  • Staying Healthy: Take steps to avoid flu, oth­er illnesses (Jan. 24, 2020 and Jan. 27, 2020)
  • Health Tips: Flu and respiratory diseases in­cluding novel (new) coronavirus (Feb. 11, 2020)
  • Staying Vigilant: Flu and respiratory disease prevention tips (Feb. 25, 2020)
  • Staying Vigilant: Flu response and preven­tion (Feb. 29, 2020)
  • Voluntary Use of Filtering Facepiece (FFP) Respirators that explained the use of masks.

Consistent with the processes put in place dur­ing the H1N1 (swine flu) pandemic in 2009, employees may choose to wear FFP and/or nitrile gloves at work. Management Instruction EL-810- 2009-4 addresses the use of gloves and masks and states management must provide these items.

Management also sent out numerous post­ers from the CDC that should be prominently dis­played in every facility to include bathrooms and break areas. These are:

  • Stop Germs! Wash Your Hands
  • What you need to know about the coronavi­rus disease 2019 (COVID-19)
  • What to do if you are sick with the coronavi­rus disease 2019 (COVID19)
  • Symptoms of Coronavirus Disease 2019
  • Stop the Spread of Germs.

You can find all these Coronavirus resources here.

APWU RESPONSE

In addition to the meeting at headquarters, a teleconference with the Regional Coordinators and then a full briefing of the Nation­al Executive Council (comprised of every national officer) was held on March 3, 2020. The Regional Safety and Health Representatives will be reaching out to the local and state organi­zations to make sure they are aware of the proto­cols, guidelines, and to assist the locals as needed.

The APWU has contacted two expert safety pro­fessionals who will assist us. One of them previously worked with the APWU during the 2001 anthrax crisis as well as the H1N1 (swine flu) pandemic and is well versed in efforts of both the APWU and the USPS during these past events.

VIRUS ON SURFACES

During these meetings with the Safety and Health Representatives one of the most common questions directed at union representatives from members is  about COVID-19 being trans­mitted on surfaces. The CDC has a Frequently Asked Questions page on the virus where this is addressed:

There is still a lot that is unknown about the newly emerged COVID-19 and how it spreads. Two other coronaviruses have emerged previously to cause severe illness in people (MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV). The virus that causes COVID-19 is more genetically related to SARS-CoV than MERS-CoV, but both are betacoronaviruses with their origins in bats. While we don’t know for sure that this virus will behave the same way as SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, we can use the information gained from both of these earlier coronaviruses to guide us.

In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packag­ing that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures. Coronaviruses are gener­ally thought to be spread most often by respiratory droplets. Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with im­ported goods and there have not been any cases of COVID-19 in the United States associated with imported goods.

PREVENT VIRUS SPREAD

The most effective method to prevent the spread of COVID-19 is frequent handwashing, use of hand sanitizer of at least 60% alcohol, and staying home from work when you are sick.

Along with these the Postal Service has said they will be implementing additional cleaning and sanitizing of facilities and work stations. They will be providing hand sanitizer in facilities to include customer areas.

The additional cleaning will be in line with what was done during the 2009 H1N1 (swine flu) pan­demic. Management issued a new MMO-031-20 Influenza and Coronavirus Cleaning Contingency. This Maintenance Management Order (MMO) should be in effect now, and the APWU is currently reviewing it to ensure it is sufficient. The APWU requested that the current clean­ing solutions under the MS-47 TL-5 be temporar­ily changed to chemicals previously used to better ensure disinfection of work areas.

“No one can take COVID-19 lightly,” President Dimondstein said. “We will be working diligent­ly and unleash all necessary resources to keep our members informed and protected. The health and safety of all postal workers is our top priority and we insist it be the Postal Service’s priority as well.”

 “There is no question that this must be a con­cern to all workers and everyone in this country,” said Industrial Relations Director Vance Zimmer­man. “We will provide you information and guidance as it develops.

“This is a fluid situation and new things will be learned as COVID-19 progresses and the researchers learn more,” Director Zimmerman continued. “Keep washing your hands and please follow the rest of the CDC's guidelines.”

Each post office and distribution center – no matter the size – should:

  • Have all the Stand Up talks,
  • Post the CDC posters as required by USPS headquarters,
  • Getting an adequate sup­ply of gloves and masks. Having hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipes.

If this is not happening in your workplace, please contact your local or state organization that can reach out to their Na­tional Business Agents and the Regional Coordi­nator to address the issue. The Postal Service has committed to these issues being quickly addressed and rectified.

For more information on COVID-19, documents and links to CDC resources can be ac­cessed from this page


Mar 02, 2020

From: Omar Gonzalez <ogonzalez@apwu.org>
Sent: Sunday, March 1, 2020 9:19 AM
Subject: Fwd: USPS Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

Please see the below. Also be advised APWU is demanding an emergency meeting with USPS to discuss contingency plans, our concerns and demands.

APWU is coordinating with experts in the field to develop our own protocols and will reach out to the Mail Handlers Union. Including congressional contacts, state contacts and direct lines to CDC.

Locals need to be on the alert. For one, insist that the 2-29-20 Stand Up Talk is given to every single employee. Also that employees wash their hands. And if employees are sick they stay home and we fight any attendance issues.

Once HQ meets, the EB will meet and more info will be issued. 

Omar

Sent from my iPhone


Begin forwarded message:

From: Vance Zimmerman <vzimmerman@apwu.org>
Date: March 1, 2020 at 5:33:03 AM PST
To: Resident Officers <ResidentOfficers@apwu.org>, Regional Coordinators <RegionalCoordinators@apwu.org>, NBAs <NBAs@apwu.org>
Cc: Phil Tabbita <ptabbita@apwu.org>, Michael Macho <mmacho@apwu.org>, Charlie Cash <CCash@apwu.org>
Subject: USPS Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19

All,

An employee at the Seattle NDC has tested positive COVID-19 (corona virus).  You will find attached all the documents the Postal Service sent us last night.  Please disseminate to your various mailing lists and get the word out.  Employees can wear nitrile gloves and facemasks.  The Postal Service must provide them.

In Solidarity,

Vance Zimmerman

Industrial Relations Director

American Postal Workers Union, AFL-CIO

1300 L Street, NW

Washington, DC  20005-4128

Tel:  202.842.4273 | Fax:  202.371.0992


Download: 2019-ncov-factsheet.pdf , COVID19-symptoms.pdf , sick-with-2019-nCoV-fact-sheet.pdf , Standup Talk.docx , stop-the-spread-of-germs.pdf , Voluntary_FFP_Use[1].doc

Feb 27, 2020

Information for APWU Members on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)

February 26, 2020

On February 26, 2020, your APWU Regional Safety Representatives met with the Regional Coordinators, Article 14 Officers, and the Industrial Relations Director. During this meeting COVID-19 was discussed extensively.

Your representatives have held ongoing conversations with the Postal Service about COVID-19. We will continue to be in discussions with the Service as the spread of the disease widens around the world and new information is learned. The APWU cares about your health and safety and is engaged on this issue. We are not allowing the Postal Service to take a passive approach to the risks of the disease.

The most recent information on the COVID-19 virus can be found on the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) website at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html. There are multiple webpages that discuss the spread, symptoms, and other information on COVID-19.

One of most frequently asked questions received at APWU is in regards to the survivability of COVID-19 on packages coming from areas with wide spread infection. The CDC FAQ page at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html says:

Q: Am I at risk for COVID-19 from a package or products shipping from China?

A: There is still a lot that is unknown about the newly emerged COVID-19 and how it spreads. Two other coronaviruses have emerged previously to cause severe illness in people (MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV). The virus that causes COVID-19 is more genetically related to SARS-CoV than MERS-CoV, but both are betacoronaviruses with their origins in bats. While we don’t know for sure that this virus will behave the same way as SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV, we can use the information gained from both of these earlier coronaviruses to guide us. In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures. Coronaviruses are generally thought to be spread most often by respiratory droplets. Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with imported goods and there have not been any cases of COVID-19 in the United States associated with imported goods. Information will be provided on the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) website as it becomes available.

According to the CDC recommendations the spread of COVID-19 can be slowed by frequent hand washing, using hand sanitizer of at least 60% alcohol, and staying home from work or activities when you are sick.

As more information becomes available, we will post updates on the website and through our other communication channels.


Feb 13, 2020

APWU Responds to White House Budget

February 12, 2020

On Monday, President Trump issued his budget for the next fiscal year. Among its proposals were the entirety of the recommendations of the 2018 White House Task Force on the Postal Service, which include service cuts, lower pay and for postal workers and accelerated outsourcing and privatization of postal work.

“The President’s Budget is another broadside attack by this White House on postal workers, our union and our customers’ well-deserved right to a public Postal Service that meets their needs,” said APWU President Mark Dimondstein. “It doubles down on the Task Force proposals which would deteriorate the mail, lead to the loss of thousands of decent jobs, and set the Post Office up to be sold off to the highest bidder.”

Just last week, the House of Representatives passed the USPS Fairness Act, with overwhelming bipartisan support. The bill would repeal the prefunding mandate which led to the manufactured financial crisis in the Postal Service. Nonetheless, the White House budget calls on USPS to resume prefunding payments, no matter their impact on postal finances.

“Simply put, this is an insult to the hundreds of thousands of dedicated and hardworking postal workers who make the Postal Service the most efficient post in the world and this country’s most trusted institution,” continued Dimondstein. “Our collective struggle to defend the public Postal Service and our jobs must continue, from the workroom floor to the streets, from the ballot box to Congress and the White House.”

The budget also proposes slashing social safety net programs, eliminating or reducing CSRS and FERS cost of living increases, increasing employee retirement contributions, and changing the way retirement is calculated.  “This budget is a blueprint of the administrations priorities and it is clear they do not value the dedicated postal and federal workforce, seniors, or those in need of assistance” said Legislative and Political Director Judy Beard.  “As Congress develops their own budget, we will remain vigilant and work with our bipartisan allies to fight back against the attacks laid out in the White House budget.

JOIN THE FEB 25 USPS FAIRNESS ACT NATIONWIDE CALL-IN DAY

On Feb. 25, postal workers and the communities we serve are standing up for our public Postal Service. It's time to protect America's most cherished institution.

The House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed the USPS Fairness Act. Now let's get it through the Senate. We are telling our Senators to pass the Senate companion bill, S.2965.

In 2006, Congress saddled our public Postal Service with an unfair and unsustainable burden of pre-funding retiree health care benefits for the next 75 years! That means paying now for USPS workers who aren't even born yet.

The USPS Fairness Act will start to put that right by removing the unfair burden. By repealing the prefunding mandate, the Postal Service would then be able to focus on investing and innovating services in order to better meet its mission to service every American household and business.

Join us supporting our public Postal Service. Sign up to call your Senators to support S.2965 on Feb. 25, 2020.


Feb 10, 2020

H.R. 2382 Passes the House 

APWU Members Instrumental in Victory!

February 5, 2020

On Feb. 5, the USPS Fairness Act (H.R. 2382) passed the House of Representatives with overwhelming, bipartisan support – 309 ‘yea,’ 106 ‘nay,’ and 15 Representatives did not vote. The House’s passage of this legislation is the first step toward repealing the retiree health care prefunding mandate set forth in the 2006 Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act (PAEA). The prefunding mandate is responsible for 92 percent of Postal Service net losses since 2007 and is a threat to the financial sustainability of the Postal Service.

“Passing this legislation in the House is a positive step toward relieving the Postal Service of the manufactured financial crisis caused by the prefunding mandate,” said Legislative & Political Director Judy Beard. “APWU members were absolutely instrumental in educating their Representatives on this issue and obtaining support for the legislation. Without you, we would not have been able to achieve this milestone.”

APWU active, retired, and auxiliary members made over 7,570 calls to Congress and conducted numerous office visits urging support for this legislation. “Our members’, allies’, and sister postal unions’ efforts to speak to Congress and the public about the truth behind the Postal Service’s financial burden are paying off with this bipartisan legislation,” said President Mark Dimondstein. “Again, we see the power of workers and collective action.”

With H.R. 2382 passing the House, we now turn our attention to the companion bill in the Senate, S. 2965.

SENATE DAY OF ACTION ANNOUNCED

The passage of H.R. 2382 in the House has us fired up and we are ready to take our fight to the Senate! Once again, we will be asking our APWU members to participate on a national call-in day of action on Tuesday, February 25.

APWU members, along with our allies, will flood the phones in their Senators’ offices and ask them to become a cosponsor of S. 2965. Thousands of APWU members called in during our last call in day of action, resulting in every member of the House of Representatives being contacted and numerous Representatives signing onto the bill. We are confident we can duplicate that success and achieve suppo rt for S. 2965, but we need your help!

Text ACTION to 91990 to receive a reminder call on February 25, use the form below or you can place it on your calendar.

JOIN THE FEB 25 USPS FAIRNESS ACT NATIONWIDE CALL-IN DAY

On Feb. 25, postal workers and the communities we serve are standing up for our public Postal Service. It's time to protect America's most cherished institution.

The House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed the USPS Fairness Act. Now let's get it through the Senate. We are telling our Senators to pass the Senate companion bill, S.2965.

In 2006, Congress saddled our public Postal Service with an unfair and unsustainable burden of pre-funding retiree health care benefits for the next 75 years! That means paying now for USPS workers who aren't even born yet.

The USPS Fairness Act will start to put that right by removing the unfair burden. By repealing the prefunding mandate, the Postal Service would then be able to focus on investing and innovating services in order to better meet its mission to service every American household and business.

Join us supporting our public Postal Service. Sign up to call your Senators to support S.2965 on Feb. 25, 2019.


Feb 03, 2020

Secretary-Treasurer Powell Joins Call for Moral Revival for Civil and Economic Rights

January 31, 2020

On Jan. 29, Secretary-Treasurer Elizabeth “Liz” Powell represented the APWU at the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival’s press conference in Washington, DC. The press conference, held on Capitol Hill, raised awareness for the Poor People’s Campaign’s Moral Budget, a budget proposal centering the needs of the 140 million poor people in the country. The press conference also promoted the organization’s “Mass Poor People’s Assembly & Moral March on Washington,” scheduled for June 20, 2020.

In her remarks, Powell recalled the unanimous resolution adopted at the 2014 APWU Biennial National Convention to support the Forward Together Moral Monday Movement, a civil disobedience campaign to protest actions by the North Carolina state government in 2014. That movement was led by Rev. William Barber, who now co-chairs the Poor People’s Campaign.

Powell also emphasized the importance of the labor movement standing for civil rights. “There is a liaison between labor and civil rights. One cannot go without the other,” Powell said. “We each fight for economic justice, social justice, human rights, women’s rights every day.” Powell pledged the APWU’s full support for the June 2020 March on Washington.

The Poor People’s Campaign, inspired by the 1968 campaign of the same name led by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., began in 2018 under Barber’s leadership. In the summer of 2018, activists in over 40 states began a campaign of civil disobedience and direct action to build lasting power for poor and impacted people. The campaign has continued into 2020 with the release of the Moral Budget and 25-state We Must Do M.O.R.E. Tour (Mobilize, Organize, Register, and Educate) leading up to the June 20, 2020 March on Washington.

Secretary-Treasurer Powell was joined by activists, organizers, and other labor leaders, including CWA Secretary-Treasurer Sara Steffens, AFSCME President Lee Saunders, AFT President Randi Weingarten, AFA-CWA President Sara Nelson, Acting AFGE President Everett Kelley and UFCW Vice President Robin Williams.

For a full video of the event, click here. For more information on the June 20, 2020 event, visit the Poor People’s Campaign event page and Facebook page.


Jan 30, 2020

APWU Executive Board Endorses Bernie Sanders for President

January 30, 2020

The APWU National Executive Board voted on Jan. 29 to endorse Senator Bernie Sanders for President of the United States.

In light of the importance of the presidential election and in response to many inquiries from members as to the union leadership’s position, a number of “top tier” candidates, or their designees, were invited to address the Executive Board. Candidates who oppose the public Postal Service were not invited.

“We’re pleased that a number of presidential candidates have positions and have taken actions supportive of postal workers and expanding union rights. But when we judge candidates by their long-term and consistent actions, Bernie Sanders stands out as a true champion of postal workers and all workers throughout the country,” said APWU President Mark Dimondstein.

“Bernie Sanders has proven he is a fierce advocate on the side of postal workers. He has opposed the closures of postal facilities and reduced service standards. He has been a leader in the fight for expanded postal financial services and was the lone senator who stopped postal privatizers from appointments to the Postal Board of Governors.”

Senator Sanders’ commitment to working people extends far beyond postal workers. He has a long record of walking picket lines, fighting for living wages and health care as a human right, advocating for veterans’ benefits, promoting expansion of social security and opposing every job-killing trade deal like NAFTA. Because of his record, Senator Sanders is now rated as the most popular senator.

The positions of the Sanders campaign align with the APWU’s core principles of social and economic justice for all, as expressed in our union Constitution and by delegates to our national conventions.

In a speech to APWU convention delegates, Sanders displayed his long and passionate commitment to the public Postal Service and opposition to all efforts aimed at postal privatization: “The beauty of the Postal Service is that it provides universal service six days a week to every corner of America, no matter how small or how remote. It provides decent paying union jobs to some 500,000 Americans and is the largest employer of veterans…. Yet, the Postal Service is under constant and vicious attack. The same billionaires who want to privatize Social Security, Medicare and public education also want to privatize the Postal Service….The wealthy and the powerful see an opportunity for Wall Street and corporate America to make billions in profits out of these services and couldn’t care less how privatization or degradation of services affects ordinary Americans.”

Bernie Sanders accepts zero corporate dollars and his “Not Me, Us” campaign slogan reflects Sanders’ belief that the campaign is not about electing one individual but rather, “… building a movement with millions of Americans to take on a corrupt political system that holds in place a rigged economy.”

“The National Executive Board encourages members and their families to be registered to vote and where available sign up for absentee ballots to exercise this “vote by mail” option, continued Mark Dimondstein. “The Executive Board fully recognizes and respects that our members come from all walks of life, hold many differing political beliefs and vote according to their own conscience. However, for the Executive Board to remain silent at a time when the current administration advocates selling the entire public Postal Service to private corporate interests, would be a failure of our leadership. As with 2016, once again the Sanders campaign is boldly uplifting the goals and aspirations of workers. Simply put, we believe it is in the interests of all postal workers, our job security and our union to support and elect Bernie Sanders as president.”


Jan 27, 2020

APWU Awaits Arbitration Award for new Union Contract

January 24, 2020 

The Interest Arbitration Award for our new union contract is expected within the next 4-6 weeks. Once Neutral Arbitrator Stephen Goldberg and the Arbitration Panel issues the Award the APWU national leadership will immediately share the outcome with the members. In addition, as soon as possible after the Award is received the APWU will mail a new and updated union contract (Collective Bargaining Agreement) to every member.


Dec 06, 2019

OWCP Online Claim Filing

Sue Carney

November 20, 2019

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(This article first appeared in the November/December 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) â€‹

All postal employees who are injured on duty will soon have the option of filing Office of Workers’ Compensation (OWCP) claims online through the Employees’ Compensation Operation and Management Portal (ECOMP). This is a long overdue option that will finally bring the Postal Service into compliance with a Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA) regulation requiring all federal agencies, including the USPS, to offer employees electronic claim filing directly with OWCP by December 31, 2012.

A segment of ECOMP, Web Enabled Electronic Document Submission (WEEDS) was initially introduced to postal workers in 2012 as an online tool to assist with claims processing and document tracking, but it alone did not satisfy the federal mandate. WEEDS allows claimants, representatives, medical providers and employing agency staff to upload documents into existing claim files. Claims Examiners are able to view the newly submitted information within four hours. Documents are assigned a Document Control Number (DCN) as proof of receipt and for tracking purposes.

This feature remains available without registration under the expansion of online services but claimants will need to provide their OWCP case file number, date of injury and other personal identifiers to take advantage of this portion of the user-friendly system. As an added security measure, these identifiers must precisely match the existing file information.

DOL reports ECOMP filing is more secure than paperbased filing and permits more efficient data management. Benefits for claimants include an improved ability to track the status of forms and documents submitted through ECOMP, faster claim adjudication, expedited delivery of FECA medical and compensation benefits, and quicker OWCP nurse intervention assignments for employees who are unable to return to work because of workplace disabilities.

The Postal Service has established a staggered Area rollout for its Districts. Employees should not attempt to use the electronic filing application before their District is online. Once implemented, postal management should inform injured workers that e-filing is available. If, however, an employee prefers paper forms and manual filing, management must accept and process paper claim forms. Refusal may subject them to a fine of not more than $500 or 1 year in prison, or both (ELM 542.33).

To use ECOMP, claimants must create an account with a unique user ID and passcode. They will need to provide personal information including their Social Security number, their private email address (not postal) and their immediate supervisor’s work email.

After logging in, employees will have access to their personal ECOMP Dashboard; they will be able to file new traumatic injury and occupational disease claims, and track documents submitted through ECOMP with the document’s ECOMP Control Number (ECN). They will also be able to submit new forms, such as a CA7 Claim for WLC directly from an existing claim in their dashboard, and be able to file for scheduled awards. In these instances, a claim number will also be required.

Upon employee submission, all new claims (CA1, CA2) will be forwarded to their immediate supervisor for completion of the agency portion of the form. Employees and supervisors will be required to sign and date a paper copy of the form following a short review that is conducted by a USPS Health and Resource Management specialist. The paper form will be retained in the employee’s USPS compensation file. The employee’s online submission date, not signature date is tattooed on the e-form and will be relied upon to hold the Postal Service accountable to all FECA timely submission deadlines.

ECOMP is maintained by the Department of Labor and is easily accessed through its public internet site. To register, find user guides, video tutorials and to learn more visit https://www.ecomp.dol.gov.


Dec 06, 2019

Joining the APWU Just Got Easier

Anna Smith

November 20, 2019

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(This article first appeared in the November/December 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

Organizing is a daily responsibility that should be shared by everyone. These days it seems as if most everyone has a mobile device of some sort. Now with the new online join tool every one of us can be an organizer! Sign up a non-member in minutes!

I am excited to announce that we are now able to accept membership applications (1187s) online from current APWU Bargaining Unit employees! The “Join APWU” option on the home page of our website will allow a nonmember to complete the entire process from their phone or computer.

The response has been great in just the last few short weeks since launching the tool. New members have been signing up and making the decision to stand with us. After speaking with them, I found out that they felt the process of joining online was very simple.

During the application process, there is also the opportunity for new members to express their desire to play an active role in the APWU by selecting various areas of interest or expertise. This information is then forwarded to their local or state presidents. Also displayed will be their bi-weekly dues amount.

Once the electronic 1187 is submitted, a confirmation email containing the completed 1187 will be emailed to both the new member and the Organization Department. In addition, the Department will be mailing their local or state organization a copy of the 1187.

Form 1187s received through the online procedure will automatically be entered into our system, thereby expediting their processing time.

In some instances, new hires, and those transferring from other unions may not be able to use the online process until the Postal Service has notified APWU Headquarters that the employee is officially on the rolls in our bargain- ing unit. We are continuing to work on making the online option available in these circumstances as well as an avenue for APWU-represented private-sector employees.

In the meantime, these employees can still utilize the hard copy or online PDF version, and return it by mail, email, or fax.

A guide to the “join online” procedure is available here for review/download to aide you in assisting others.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions. As always, I value your feedback.

Organizing in 2020

Let organizing start with you and others will follow. As we kick off a new year, challenge yourself to be that person who takes a stance to organize. Even if you’re the first, others will follow. Don’t let the fight for the right to organize be for nothing. Remember you are the union!

Work with your local leaders to set the goals to be stronger tomorrow that we are today. As we come to the end of the year, and local and state leaders begin their budget planning for 2020, it is past time to make organizing a priority. Having a budget, and a plan to organize will make all the difference. Remember we are the union and it is only as strong as we make it.


Thank you

I would like to express my sincere gratitude and appreciation for your support and vote in the 2019 APWU National Election of Officers. It has been, and will continue to be, a privilege to serve the membership. By working together, we have made some great strides in organizing, and I look forward to working with all of our local, state, and national leaders to keep the momentum going.

We have a lot of hard work ahead, but I have faith we can work through any obstacle that we face by standing together, united!




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