10/03/2018 - (This article first appeared in the September/October 2018 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine)
By MVS Division Director Michael O. Foster
The American Postal Workers Union (APWU) and the United States Postal Service (USPS) are in the process of contract negotiations. It is no secret that MVS faces very challenging times during this round of negotiations. The USPS, inspired by the White House, is pushing an agenda of privatization and trying to turn middle class jobs into part-time positions.
The Postal Service will advance an agenda of cheap labor called “efficiency” in an attempt to extract concessions from many years of bargaining between the parties. Postal management’s agenda is to duplicate the business models of Wal-Mart, Target, UPS and other for-profit corporations that have little regard for hourly employees. In this model of corporate greed, many benefits achieved by the APWU over the years – such as a 40-hour work week, penalty overtime, and scheduled off days – could become a thing of the past. Although the APWU MVS Division has submitted numerous proposals, we have yet to receive any proposals from the USPS, so we are virtually negotiating with ourselves. On top of that, our current Collective Bargaining Agreement expires on September 20.