March 2021 Update
The Postmaster General and the Board of Governors have released the long awaited 10-year plan for the Postal Service, things seem to be developing on the legislative front, and we continue working to ensure compliance with the conversion MOU negotiated by the National Union. We hit the ground running on the first of the year and it appears that a hectic pace will continue throughout 2021.
Oh, and you may have noticed that the Local 323 website has a new look. In all areas, Local 323 continues building and preparing for the future.
On March 23rd, PMG Louis DeJoy and the USPS Board of Governors released their ten-year plan for the Postal Service. Under the title “Delivering for America”, the PMG and BOG describe it as “Our Vision and Ten-Year Plan to Achieve Financial Sustainability and Service Excellence.” The National Union has already put out a memo identifying some concerns and areas of potential disagreement. That memo has been circulated to all Members of the Local Executive Board and Local Union Council.
The ten-year plan was a topic of discussion at a recent meeting of the Local Executive Board. It’s easy to breeze through the positive aspects of the ten-year plan, because it’s definitely in our interest to have a financially stable Postal Service. But like all Mail Handlers, the Board Members focused on areas that have the greatest capability to impact our lives on the work floor. An area of particular concern is the potential for closings and consolidations. This concern along with the possibility of tour consolidations or bid realignments have proven to be disruptive to our work lives in the past. We’ve been down these roads before and the Representatives of Local 323 are prepared to engage these battles when they come. I wish I could say if they come, but I’m fully convinced it’s only a matter of when.
Postal reform is once again being discussed in Congress. The NPMHU Legislative Agenda for the 117th Congress identifies the areas where the NPMHU will support legislation. Among these are, comprehensive postal reform, protecting the fundamentals of the Postal Service, strengthening USPS service standards, protecting earned retirement and healthcare benefits, promoting workers’ rights, and strengthening American elections. Local 323 is prepared to begin contacting our elected representatives once legislation is introduced.
The Local Union continues to implement the MHA conversion MOU which was secured by the National Union. This agreement included 80 career conversions within Local 323. Compliance with the conversion procedures has been closely monitored by our Representatives. Along with the MOU conversions, we continue seeing additional conversions under the process contained in the National Agreement. As always, this will be an ongoing endeavor.
Lastly, the Local 323 website has underwent an overhaul. The structure of our website had been in place since 2014 and an update was likely overdue. In any case, the objective was to bring our website up to date with recent methods and technology and a particular emphasis was placed on making the site more friendly for tablets and handheld devices. I’m grateful to the Officers and Stewards who served as the testing team prior to the rollout. This version of the website should serve us well for at least a couple of years.