08/23/2018 - On day 3 of the 24th Biennial National Convention, the delegates heard from American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) leaders about the 1968 Memphis Sanitation Workers Strike. Many delegates found inspiration from the integral link between our past and present struggles, and from the crucial connection between the civil rights and labor movements.
08/21/2018 - On Tuesday afternoon, the highest governing body of the American Postal Workers Union hit the streets to protest against the possible sale of the U.S. Postal Service.
“This White House, the Heritage Foundation, and their billionaire backers, the Wall Street investors, they want their greedy hands on the public till and the public good – but they’ve started something that they’re not going to be able to stop,” said President Dimondstein. “They think this is their time…We’re going to show them this is truly our time.”
President Dimondstein’s State of the Union Address
08/20/2018 - On Monday, Aug. 20, APWU National President Mark Dimondstein delivered the “State of the Union” address to the 2,038 delegates to the 24th Biennial National Convention. President Dimondstein addressed the successes of the past and struggles for the future. “I look forward to a spirited and productive week and am confident we will leave more united, inspired and dedicated to the cause of labor rights and dignity.”
08/19/2018 - On Aug. 19 and 20, APWU craft divisions – Clerk, Maintenance, Motor Vehicle Service, Support Services – and retirees held conferences. The ongoing contract negotiations was a topic on everyone’s mind.
Labor strikes back! In a critical battle faced by the labor movement union members and community allies joined together to stop Right-to-Work (for less) in Missouri. These laws make it optional for workers covered by union contracts to help pay for the expenses unions incur protecting workers’ rights.
Passed by the Missouri General Assembly in 2017, this anti-worker law was blocked from being implemented after workers rose up and gathered roughly 300,000 signatures against the law. This action forced a direct vote by the residents of Missouri on the law.
08/13/2018 - The APWU and the Postal Service have agreed to a moratorium on grievances, disciplinary actions and arbitration hearings at the national, regional, state and local levels from Aug. 13 until Aug. 27 due to the 2018 APWU Biennial Convention, Industrial Relations Director Vance Zimmerman has announced. The period spans a total of 15 days.
08/10/2018 - In accordance with the 2015-2018 APWU/USPS Collective Bargaining Agreement (union contract), career employees represented by the APWU will receive a 31 cent per hour cost-of-living adjustment (COLA), effective September 1, 2018. It will appear in paychecks dated September 21, 2018 (Pay Period 19-2018), and will total $645.00 per year.
08/08/2018 - APWU members can continue to volunteer in political campaigns under the long-standing leave-without-pay rules in the Employee and Labor Relations Manual (ELM). A national arbitrator rejected changes the Postal Service made to the Leave Without Pay (LWOP) rules for how employees request LWOP to participate in political activities organized by their unions.
In his award on August 6, 2018, the arbitrator upheld the APWU’s challenge to the Postal Service’s unilateral changes to the leave program that put the burden of managing LWOP requests on employees, rather than supervisors. The award protects employees’ right to request LWOP to volunteer through their union to participate in important political activities, like the upcoming November elections.
Special Enrollment Period:
08/03/2018 - On July 30, 2018, the Postal Service notified the APWU that there will be a special enrollment period for PSEs to enroll in the USPS Health Benefits Plan. The enrollment period will be open from August 20, 2018 through October 4, 2018. Coverage will become effective on October 13, 2018.
PSEs are eligible for enrollment in the APWU CDO plan after completing their first 360-day appointment. PSEs may enroll in the APWU CDO plan within 60 days of being appointed to a second term as a PSE or during regular Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) open season held in November and December of each year after meeting eligibility requirements.
07/27/2018 - (This article first appeared in the July-August 2018 issue of The American Postal Worker magazine)
JetBlue Workers Vote for Union Future
Workers are standing up for a better deal at JetBlue. It’s one of the few companies in the airline industry that has operated in the past as a non-union carrier.
The future will be different. In April, flight attendants at the New York-based airline overwhelmingly voted for representation by the Transport Workers Union (TWU). In May, the Air Line Pilots Association announced a tentative agreement on a first contract with the airline.