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APWU Web News Article 6-2019

Los Angeles Teachers Striking for Smaller Class Sizes and Fair Pay

01/18/2019 -  

On Monday, Jan. 14, over 30,000 members of the United Teachers Los Angeles (UTLA) walked out on strike, taking to the streets in a driving rainstorm. The strike against the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) comes after their 21 month-long contract negotiation reached an impasse.

The education workers are demanding: reasonable class sizes; an instant 6.5 percent pay increase; more nurses, librarians, psychiatrists and counselors to fully staff all district schools; and limits on funding to charter schools (a form of education privatization – turning schools into profit making and driven entities).

From the Field

01/16/2019 - This article first appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

Below are quotes from various APWU local and state publications throughout the country. All the publications listed are part of the Postal Press Association.

Are We Going to Let the Big Corporations Privatize Us?

Including the Service We Give to Our Country?

01/16/2019 - (This article first appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

By Vice President Debby Szeredy

Let’s talk about the facts. Here I am, a union postal worker. What will happen if I don’t step up and help mobilize my co-workers and my community to stop privatization?

The free market plan is to privatize any and all areas that are vital to the American public. We have seen how privatization affects us. Examples of privatization include: our health care system, water and sewer services, bus and transit systems, parking meters, tolls, roads and bridges, prison systems, mortgage and pay day loans, student loans, deregulation of fossil fuels that pollute our planet, and the money in politics (dark money) that helps to fund candidates who will work hard to privatize public services.

Not Surprising - USPS 2012 Cuts Do Not Create Projected Savings

01/16/2019 - (This article first appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

The Office of Inspector General (OIG) Oct. 15 report proves what postal workers have been shouting for years – cuts to mail processing and service is not the answer to the challenges facing the Postal Service.

In 2011, the Postal Service embarked on a disastrous endeavor to close and consolidate more than two hundred mail processing facilities in an attempt to save money. In 2015, the Postal Service began the second part of its reckless cost-cutting program – called the Operational Window Change (OWC) – revising its First-Class Mail (FCM) service standards. These changes included the elimination of single-piece overnight FCM service and shifting some First-Class pieces from the two-day service standard to a three-day service standard, as well as additional closings and consolidations of processing plants.

The Postal Service claimed these changes would lead to savings of over $1.6 billion over the 2016 and 2017 fiscal years. But, according to a new audit report from the OIG, the results haven’t even come close to that.

Majority of Senate Members Oppose Postal Privatization

01/16/2019 - (This article first appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

In Dec. 2018, Senate Resolution 633 (S. Res. 633) achieved a majority of co-sponsors. This resolution expressed the need to keep the United States Postal Service as an independent establishment of the federal government and that it should not be sold to private corporations. The House of Representatives’ companion resolution, H. Res. 993, obtained a majority of co-sponsors in Oct. 2018.

A Grand Alliance

Task Force: No Fire Sale, But Privatization Threat Looms

01/16/2019 - (This article first appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

The long-awaited report of President Trump’s Task Force on the future of the Postal Service was released Dec. 4, months after its original August deadline. While the task force stopped short of proposing an immediate, full-scale fire sale of the Postal Service, it’s no wonder the White House held the report until after the midterm elections – its recommendations would slow mail service, stop the Postal Service from innovating and would, indeed, privatize vast swaths of the Postal Service’s operations.

The Ostrich Syndrome

01/16/2019 - (This article first appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

By President Mark Dimondstein 

“Bury your head in the sand” is a common saying based on the myth that when an ostrich senses danger, it buries its head, believing that if they do not see the danger, it does not exist.

Postal workers are facing great dangers from corporate, financial and political forces pulling the strings behind both the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) proposals of June 21 and the new White House Task Force report of Dec. 4 (See page 6 on the Task Force). Sticking our heads in the sand and pretending the threats do not exist will not work any better for us than for the ostrich.

White House Targets Postal Workers

01/16/2019 - (This article first appeared in the January/February 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

On Dec. 4, 2018, the U.S. Treasury Department released the long-awaited report by the White House’s Task Force on the United States Postal System. The Task Force was created by an executive order issued on April 12, 2018. It was chaired by the Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin, with the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) also serving on the committee. This task force report followed a June 21 recommendation from the White House Office of Management and Budget, which called for the wholesale privatization of the USPS, i.e. selling it to private corporations.

Press Release

Santa May Need to Take Out a Loan in the Future

Study shows that, if implemented, White House proposal for the U.S. Postal Service would hit 70 million Americans in rural areas, small towns, and suburbs with much higher fees for packages

12/21/2018 - American Postal Workers Union President Mark Dimondstein says: “This gift delivered to Wall Street will be paid for by Main Street.”

WASHINGTON – When the Trump Administration released its postal task force report earlier this month, the American Postal Workers Union said that, if implemented, it would result in “less services and higher prices.” Now, a new research study from the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) shows just how costly privatizing or even partially privatizing postal services would be. Entitled “Who Would Pay the Biggest Price for Postal Privatization,” IPS researchers demonstrate that the White House plan would lead to significantly higher prices and less service for 70 million Americans in rural areas, small towns and suburbs – and all those who mail and ship to those locations.

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