February 2011 Update
Earlier this month the National Office issued the official call to submit proposed changes for the 2011 National Agreement. This affords each individual Member an opportunity to propose changes in contractual language which the Union could present when bargaining commences with the Postal Service.
There is no question we are experiencing a period of significant change as our employer reconfigures operations in response to a declining volume of first class letters; and in a greater sense, from the lingering effects of a broad economic decline. We have seen the impact of this reconfiguration in the change from the BMC network to an NDC network as well as by the extent with which management has invoked the Article 12 excessing procedures.
These events have provided a good backdrop to evaluate the manner in which our contractual language operates and consider what changes could produce a better result. This is particularly true with respect to Article 12. Many people have said that the results the contract produces are not fair or are not right. Is it fair that management can excess someone to an installation hundreds of miles away? Is it fair that someone has to convert to PTF in order to avoid being excessed to an installation hundreds of miles away? Is it fair when management closes the building in which you work and assigns you to work somewhere else? These are just a few examples of questions where it could be suggested that the contract produces a result that’s not fair. In many cases I don’t disagree with the sentiment; but, the Union’s job is to enforce the contract.
If we want to change the result, then we have to change the contract, and the place where the contract gets changed is the bargaining table. So in response to the National Office’s call, I’ve been formulating my proposals and soliciting input from many of your Representatives. This column is the call to you, the Member of Local 323, to submit your proposals. Below I’ve included a link to the proposal form. You can submit your proposals to the National Office or through Local 323. The deadline for the submission of proposals to the National Office is March 31, 2011. Should you desire to have Local 323 submit your proposal, please make sure it arrives at the Local 323 office by March 28, 2011.
Contract Proposal Form
Finally another option, if you want to submit a proposal but you aren’t sure where it should go or you don’t want to fill out the form, send your ideas to me at LocalOffice@local323.org. I’ll draft the language and submit the proposal on your behalf. Maximizing your input to the contract means maximizing your input to the future.