For the Latest News Click HERE.
It’s September. Time to start thinking about getting a Color Coded Carrier Calendar so you can start planning for your annual leave for 2016. Let your steward know how many calendars you want and pre-pay in advance to ensure you don’t miss out. Cost is same as last year, $ 5.00 each, and all profits go to MDA.
As of 08/17/2015 the August Bid Sheet is out for the 441 stations. The Bidding starts on Tuesday 08/18/2015 and closes on Thursday 08/27/2015. To see the August Bid Sheet CLICK HERE.
The 67th Biennial Convention of the Ohio State Association of Letter Carriers is now over. It was held August 5-9, 2015 at the Doubletree by Hilton, 1111 Lakeside Ave., Cleveland, OH 44114. To see photos of the Convention, taken by Branch 40 carrier Maureen Gochett, CLICK HERE.
To see the video “The Strike at 40″ about the great Postal Strike of 1970 CLICK HERE.
To find out what it’s really like to be a CCA you should read
reprinted from The Dallas Morning News. She is off base on some things, like claiming the NALC caved on the TEs during the contract negotiations. She obviously doesn’t understand that binding interest arbitration is not caving, that it was forced on the union by the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970, and that the arbitrator, Shyam Das, decreed the terms of the contract. Otherwise, spot on.
Branch 40 – Carrier Tip of the Month
Would I Lie to You?
By Susan Lewis, Executive Vice President Branch 3, Buffalo / Western New York
It’s been said that one of the three biggest lies is, “The check is in the mail.” One of the other two is not suitable for print in this paper. (If you don’t know, either a) you currently reside under a rock or b) you were raised in a monastery. Google it.) The worst part of believing a lie for too long is when the truth comes out, it’s going to smack you in the face, so to speak. You will be fed lies on a regular basis throughout your postal career and you’re going to swallow a few of them. But, I’d like to spare you some of the bad taste, so here’s a quick guide to management’s biggest lies.
1. All routes are eight hour routes.
New employees are most susceptible to believing this, for about two weeks or until they’ve been thrown into three different routes. First of all, no route is eight hours the first time you carry it, even if you’ve carried mail for twenty years. Carriers must be given a reasonable amount of time to learn a route. That applies to CCAs as well as seasoned veterans. If you don’t believe me, watch a utility carrier. The day he or she offers to switch out of a route for you is the day they’re assigned to a pig route.
2. You only have five minutes of PM office time.
This is one of the most frequently told lies. The truth is, some, if not all supervisors believe it. This lie has spread like an internet hoax; one dumbass tells another dumbass, and he tells another until all the dumbasses have heard it and decided by consensus that it must be true. It’s not.
The M41, City Delivery Carriers Duties and Responsibilities, spells out what MUST be done upon your return to the office:
Disposition of collected mail, clearance of accountable items, processing of undelivered mail, answering of official communications.
The first one is easy; cull and dump your outgoing mail.
Clearance of accountable items is a little bit trickier. In order to be cleared of your keys and accountable mail, there needs to be a second person involved and you’ll probably have to play hide and seek to find one. Dropping your keys in the accountable room is not good enough. If your keys end up missing, you will be blamed unless a clerk has certified, in writing, that you returned them. If a certified letter gets misplaced or money from a COD goes missing, you are responsible until you are officially cleared of that responsibility by a clerk. Don’t put yourself in that situation.
Processing undelivered mail means that anything and everything that you bring back from the street must be taken care of before you leave. It’s today’s work, not tomorrow’s. It’s not to be ‘saved for the regular’, that only delays the service that we provide.
Lastly, answer official communications: this is the time it takes to answer when the supervisor asks, “What’s taking so long?” Fill them in on what your PM duties consist of and then you’ll both know. And, maybe we can finally say so long to this big lie.
3. You’re showing an hour of under time.
This is the epic lie. Under time is not determined by DOIS but even if it was, what are the odds that every carrier is ‘showing’ the same amount of time, and it always being a nice round number? You have better odds of being struck by lightning, twice, while scratching a million dollar winning lottery ticket, at the exact moment that your spouse says, “Of course you’re right, Dear.” And you look up to see pigs flying through the air. Even less likely is that all regular carriers all show a half hour of under time while CCAs all have an hour. Evaluate your workload and inform management via a 3996, the estimated time it will take you to complete all the work assigned to you for the day. Do not let this lie fluster you. Do not work unsafely or haphazardly in trying to make this lie a truth.
Those are the top three but there are plenty of others…
You can carry a fourth bundle on a park and loop as long as one is a flat and the other is letter size.
Nope. The limit is three bundles. Always.
I don’t have to let you see your steward.
Yes. Yes you do. And, it has to be within the tour of duty. That means if you ask today, you should see your steward today.
I know you have an eight hour restriction but it’s ok to work overtime as long as it’s less than a half hour.
No. Just no. I’ve never met a supervisor with a medical degree and neither have you. Believe the person whose student loans your medical insurance is paying off. If your doctor says you can only work eight hours, only work eight hours.
You’ll have to finish the route yourself; we don’t have anyone to help you.
It’s really pretty amazing that when you inform them that your workload will put you out past their random cut-off time, help is miraculously found.
DOIS projects for skips on the street.
It doesn’t. This is even harder to swallow when you finally get a look at your DPS and find a full coverage mailing or you have a third bundle.
Armed with this handy guide, you can let management worry about their numbers instead of taking on that burden. Then, you can tell yourself what is said to be the second biggest lie and make it true.
Stress? “I gave at the office.”
Have a safe and enjoyable summer.
Reprinted from the July 2015 edition of The Buzz.
Stop TPP, The Worst Trade Deal You’ve Never Heard Of
The House and Senate passed TPA (also known as Fast Track )legislation and the president signed it.
As the issue of Trans Pacific Partnership begins to heat up, it’s critical that you respond and make your voice heard!
CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE TODAY! Tell them you oppose passage of TPP.
NALC Firmly Opposes the TPP. Big Business, those guys who off-shored all the good middle class jobs, is supporting the TPP. That should be all you need to know.
Any trade deal is going to have a huge impact on America’s workers. Fast Track legislation allows power brokers to shape trade deals to their advantage and to shield the details from the public and policy experts alike. Fast Track legislation is undemocratic and almost always ends in trade deals that benefit corporations and the rich, that eliminate jobs, and that cut wages and benefits for millions of hardworking families across America. Trade deals should not be crafted behind closed doors.
Trade deals ought to lift up the standards of working people across this nation. But the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal would mean more jobs will be sent overseas. TPP gives special rights and benefits to companies that offshore investment and jobs.
Fast Track would not just allow for a quick vote on the TPP—which could include a ban on postal banking—but also on a number of other trade agreements under negotiation as well. For example, the World Trade Organization is sponsoring the negotiation of a trade in services agreement (TISA) among dozens of countries, and the U.S. government is in talks with the European Union on a Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP), which would cover our economic interaction with the EU’s 27 countries.
In both of these negotiations, the Europeans are calling for the United States to phase out the Postal Service’s monopoly on the delivery of letter mail—a policy adopted by the EU between 1992 and 2011. So in other words, allowing T-TIP and TISA to be fast-tracked could pose a direct threat to our jobs and our system of affordable universal service.
To learn more about the negative impact of Fast Track legislation on America’s working families, visit www.nofasttrack.com.
Republican Controlled House and Senate Pass Budget Bills to Balance Budget at Expense of Letter Carriers.
The Republican controlled House of representatives just passed a budget that, among other things, calls for an increase in Federal pension contributions to 6 %, that means an extra $135 taken out of your pay every two weeks.
This applies to both CSRS and FERS. There is no increase in the pension amount. It is being done to balance the budget by forcing government employees to pay more income tax because the excess contributions are going to cut the deficit. It is interesting the millionaires, billionaires, and corporations continue to get their tax loopholes and government subsidies, and are paying lower percentage of tax than the average working person with a family of 4. For 35 years, conservatives starting with Ronald Reagan and Jack Kemp have been attacking working family while at the same time cutting tax rates for corporations and the wealthy. This is just one more of those attacks.
So, you wouldn’t contribute $ 5.00 a pay to the Letter Carrier Political Fund because of whatever lame excuse you came up with. I guess now you can afford the extra $135.00 a pay for your pension, and your extra $100.00 or whatever per pay for your Health Insurance , and the extra $200.00 a month taken from your retirement check, etc., etc. etc.
You can either do nothing or together we can inundate our senators and representatives with our protests.
The choice is yours. We live in a democracy.
That means YOU are expected to PARTICIPATE.
you will start contributing $5 or $10 a pay to
Letter Carrier Political Fund
More information is available on both the House Budget and the Senate Budget, both of which aim to gut our benefits, in the LATEST NEWS.
If you want to contact your senators and representative CLICK HERE.
Summer is finally here.
CDRAAP, the latest and greatest RAP (Route Adjustment Process) is in full swing. Several units have been moved to the front of the line based on their having requesting special inspections. So if your unit has been postponed, consider it an opportunity to practice being professional all day, every day. Remember, do your route every day like you are being inspected, because you are. Clock rings, 3999 times, MSP intervals are all fair game. NALC members are working with USPS management representatives to form “teams” that will evaluate and, where appropriate, adjust routes. No carrier likes to have their route changed, but all in all, the negotiated “RAP” is the fairest system to come down the road for evaluating and adjusting routes, because they are using the regular carrier’s office and street times. Hopefully the regular has had the foresight to do his/her route everyday as a professional. There are 3 MOUs. For M-01845 Click HERE. For M-01846 Click HERE. For M-01847 Click HERE.
The next Stewards Meeting will be on Wednesday, September 2nd at 7:30 PM at the Pipefitters’ Hall.
For more information Click HERE.
The next Branch Meeting will be on Friday September 11th at 7:30 PM at the Pipefitters’ Hall.
For more information Click HERE.
US Postal Management’s Dysfunctional and Failing Culture This is an interesting and thoughtful article by a retired Postmaster detailing the problems with the USPS management culture. To read more click HERE.
Here is a little questionnaire, to make you think. Yeah, yeah, we know. Letter carriers don’t like to think. That’s why we took a job that we can do on auto-pilot. Well, humor us. Just take it for grins.
- How secure is your job?
- Do you understand the mechanism of getting business done in Washington?
- Who is your representative in Congress?
- Who are the two senators from Ohio?
- Where do each of them stand on Postal Reform?
- How much did the USPS make from operations last year?
- What is pre-funding?
- Who did you vote for for Congress in the 2014 election? (If you didn’t vote, click HERE)
- Can Congress eliminate your job?
If YOU don’t know the answers to ALL these questions, and the reasons behind the answers, you need to get educated.
We understand, it’s more fun to follow the Browns, Cavs, and Indians. But while that is mindless fun, it won’t help you keep your job if Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) decides to make the USPS file for bankruptcy. He has already stated immediately after the election that this is one of his primary goals. Pay Attention!
All our jobs exist at the whim of Congress. Your job and your and your family’s security hang in the balance. If you are not involved politically, you need to GET INVOLVED.
Never in our lifetimes have working men and women been under such a coordinated attack by the corporate and moneyed elite.
To find out how YOU can help click HERE
Founded in 1889, NALC is the union of city letter carriers employed by the U.S. Postal Service. Letter carriers delivered 156 billion pieces of mail last year, six days a week, to more than 153 million homes and businesses in every city, suburb and town in America.
National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 40 (NALC)
9700 Rockside Road, Suite 110
Valley View, Ohio 44125
- For active and retired member to sign up via bank transfer click HERE.
- To sign up for payroll deduction via phone click HERE.
- To sign up for payroll deduction via the internet click HERE.
- Retired members to have COLCPE deduction taken out of their annunity click HERE.