Attend the Legislative Conference Oct. 1
(This article first appeared in the July-August 2017 issue of The American Postal Worker magazine)
By Legislative Director Judy Beard
On Oct. 1, the APWU Legislative and Political Department will be hosting the first Legislative Conference and Training in conjunction with the All-Craft Conference. The theme of this year’s conference is Building Political, Union and Community Power. This all-day conference will consist of several workshops geared towards a variety of legislative and political areas, as well as a general session and regional breakouts.
It is a priority for the Legislative and Political Department to fulfill all our constitutional commitments, including “provid[ing] training on legislative issues at the All-Craft Conference.” While the Legislative and Political Department is constantly lobbying the government to pass legislation in line with the APWU’s legislative priorities, we are also working to address the resolution directives passed at the convention. During the conference, we will be exploring those directives.
There are six two-hour workshops and two all-day workshops available. All-day classes are scheduled from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., are first-come, first-served and have an attendee cap. They are Assembling Your A-Team Member Mobilization Workshop and How Runaway Inequality is Harming Working People and our Communities.
Each two-hour workshop will be offered twice, once from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., and again from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Participants will select two of the following classes:
- One-on-Ones With Your State Representatives & Congressional Officials
- The Interlinking of Congress and the Postal Service
- APWU Engaging to Win Local, State, and Federal Elections
- The Corporate Plan to Take Away Our Rights - Learning from our Past to Fight for our Future
- Make Digital Media Part of Your Political Strategy
- Reshaping Democracy at the State and Local Level: Changing Laws to Win Economic Power
All registered participants will then join the conference’s general session at 2:30 p.m., with Regional Breakouts afterwards.
Go to apwu.org for the workshop descriptions and to register. Join us and learn tools and strategies that will make your legislative and political efforts more successful.
The Postal Service Reform Act of 2017 (H.R. 756) received a score from the Congressional Budget Office on June 1. As the bill moves to the two committees with joint jurisdiction (Ways & Means and Energy & Commerce) we are keeping a close eye on its progress and staying active in our lobbying efforts.
There is concern that the process will be stalled because the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz, left Congress on June 30. This is not the case. Once a bill is referred to committee neither the sponsor or co-sponsor can withdraw it, and the House may act on the legislation even if the primary sponsor leaves.
Since announcing his decision, Chairman Chaffetz and the original co-sponsors have all expressed their continued commitment to advancing postal reform.
On June 13, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC-4) was appointed Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, by the full-House Republican Conference acting on the recommendation of the 32 member GOP Steering Committee. President Dimondstein and I look forward to meeting with the new chairman and working under his leadership to advance and improve the bill.
As we meet with members of Congress, we are hopeful H.R. 756 will continue to successfully advance through the legislative process.