March 2011 Update
I'd like to start this update by thanking all of the Members who took the time to respond to the call for contract proposals. Whether it was an idea, a thought, a desire, or some specific contractual language, your input helped shape the proposals which Local 323 submitted for the upcoming round of negotiations aimed at securing the 2011 National Agreement.
Management's implementation of the Article 12 procedures for relocating Mail Handlers in the metro area and beyond is reaching its final stage. The process of identifying so called “landing spots” for Mail Handlers identified as excess to the Minneapolis installation has been completed. It is anticipated that all of these people as well as those retreating to the NDC and the St. Paul P&DC will be in their new duty assignments within the next month. If anything has become apparent during this implementation it is that Article 12 does not create a perfect result. In this concern, contract proposals have been submitted in an attempt to iron out some of the wrinkles.
As the excessing procedures have reached their final stage, the Union must now turn its attention towards the implementation of the retreat rights to which people are entitled. It seems somewhat ironic to be talking about retreat rights when everyone hasn’t yet moved into their new assignments; however, we need to be forward thinking on this issue in order to be prepared for the future. Towards that objective, meetings with management are continuing in the metro Branches with our intent being the implementation of retreat rights as soon as practicable. More information in this regard will be forthcoming as things progress.