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  No. 04-11   June 4, 2004       
 
 
  NALC Executive Council Acts
To Revise Route Inspections
  Issue on Agenda for National Convention
   

The NALC Executive Council, during weeklong meetings May 24-28, decided unanimously to present to the National Convention in Honolulu, Hawaii for debate and consideration, a proposal to revamp the route inspection process.

NALC President William H. Young discusses route inspection proposal with Executive Council at meeting in Reno, Nevada. At his side are Executive Vice President Jim Williams, center, and Vice President Gary Mullins, right.  


NALC President William H. Young discusses route inspection proposal with Executive Council at meeting in Reno, Nevada. At his side are Executive Vice President Jim Williams, center, and Vice President Gary Mullins, right.

 

The current system results in daily confrontations between letter carriers and front-line supervisors and is dysfunctional. The Council proposed a new route inspection process that includes union involvement and moves away from the problems of the current process.

The Council noted that the current route inspection procedure is perceived by both letter carriers and management as being unfair. Carriers believe that management withholds mail during the process, makes unfair pencil adjustments and manipulates the process. Many managers believe that the carrier regulates his or her performance during the week of inspection.

While many details need to be discussed and agreed to, the proposal currently under consideration involves the following general characteristics:


A mechanism for selecting routes to be adjusted and determining a recent representative period to base a carrier's office and street performance.


A process to adjust the route using the regular carrier's average office and street time.

No pencil adjustments.

Improvements to and an evaluation of the computer systems to generate mail volume and other carrier data.

While there have been many efforts in the past to revisit the current route inspection and work measurement systems, they have failed for a number of reasons, including management's insistence upon proceeding unilaterally.

This new concept has been designed to be faithful to NALC's historic insistence upon the following key principles:


Routes must be adjusted to 40 hours.


Hourly pay / 8 hour days / 40 hour work weeks.

Individual effort and performance – no "time-engineered" or other artificial "standards."

Legitimate volume count.

Protection against "gaming" the system.

A significant role for union participation in the process.

President Young informed the Executive Council that this proposal would not be presented to management prior to consideration at the Honolulu convention and a careful vetting of the many details and issues it would present.

Listening to presentation at Council meeting in left photo are (l-r) National Business Agents Judy Willoughby, Barry Weiner and Paul Price NBA George Mignosi, Dir. of Safety & Health Al Ferranto, Asst. Secretary-Treasurer Myra Warren and Dir. of City Delivery Fred Rolando.

Listening to presentation at Council meeting in left photo are (l-r) National Business Agents Judy Willoughby, Barry Weiner and Paul Price. In right photo, following discussion closely are (l-r) NBA George Mignosi, Dir. of Safety & Health Al Ferranto, Asst. Secretary-Treasurer Myra Warren and Dir. of City Delivery Fred Rolando.

 

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  Cased Volume Verification Concluded;
Moratorium on Inspections Continues
   

Branch Presidents should now begin the task of gathering all the verification forms, and forwarding them to the National Business Agent's office. To assist with volume analysis, the forms should be separated by delivery zone and placed in chronological order. Any unresolved problems regarding completion or receipt of the forms should be directed to the National Business Agent.

While the volume verification and "no office assistance" restriction concluded on May 28, the moratorium on all types of route inspections and adjustments, including one-day efficiency counts and 3999s, continues through August 31.

 

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  70,852,149 Pounds
  Food Drive Record!
  Buffalo/W. New York Repeats as Top Branch
   

Letter carriers collected a record 70.9 million pounds of food donations in the 12th annual NALC National Food Drive on May 8, a jump of over 10 million pounds from last year and a new record for food donations from postal customers along our mail routes.

Final results from more than 1,400 branches showed a total of 70,852,149 pounds of non-perishable food collected and delivered to local food banks, pantries and shelters.

The total continues the NALC drive as the nation's largest one-day effort to combat hunger, and eclipsed the previous record, set in May, 2001, by nearly 2 million pounds.
In addition, Campbell Soup Company, the drive's major corporate supporter along with the U.S. Postal Service, contributed 1 million cans of soup.

NALC/Campbell Soup
2004 Award Winners

 
Category I ( 1-99 members)
Br. 501 Paris, TX 132,114
Br. 364 Clarksville, TN 122,450
 
Category II (100-499)
Br. 826 Ponce, PR 405,325
Br. 791 Snohomish Cnty, WA 378,100
 
Category III (500-999)
Br. 2008 Clearwater, FL 1,110,939
Br. 869 San Juan, PR 1,007,290
 
Category IV (1000-2499)
Br. 3 Buffalo/Western NY 1,751,470
Br. 1477 West Coast Florida 1,261,179
 
Category V (2500 +)
Br. 6000 Long Island NY Mgd 1,325,000
Br. 1100 Garden Grove, CA 1,213,496
 

Buffalo/Western New York NALC Branch 3, which collected 1,751,470 pounds of donations, was the top branch for the second consecutive year. The NALC and Campbell Soup will present awards to the top two branches in five membership categories at the Honolulu convention.

NALC President William H. Young thanked the thousands of city letter carriers, rural carriers, and other postal employees and volunteers who collected and processed the donations for community food banks, as well as the millions of Americans who left food by their mailboxes.

"The hard work and dedication by letter carriers, rural carriers and other postal employees and volunteers in this food drive was truly admirable," Young said. "Many food banks and pantries were desperate for supplies and now will be able to continue assisting needy families throughout the summer months because of your willingness to help and the generosity of your postal customers."

Young expressed his appreciation to the Postal Service and Campbell Soup Company, as well as to other major supporters: Valpak, the direct mail marketing firm; America's Second Harvest; United Way of America and its local United Ways; the AFL-CIO, and cartoonist Bil Keane, who yearly provides a special "Family Circus" drawing for the drive.

 

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  Senate Committee Votes Approval
Of Postal Reform Legislation, 17-0
  Action in House Possible Before Summer Recess
   

Postal reform took another major step forward June 2 when the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee voted 17-0 to approve a bipartisan bill proposed by Chairman Susan Collins (R-ME) and Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE) and send it toward the Senate floor.

The speedy action on the Collins-Carper measure (S. 2468) raises the possibility the entire Senate could act on postal reform before the end of the current 108th Congress. Like its counterpart in the House (H.R. 4341), the Senate bill is called the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act.

The full House is expected to consider H.R. 4341 before the Independence Day congressional recess begins in the last week of June. The House Government Reform Committee approved the bill, 40-0, on May 12.

NALC President William H. Young said momentum for postal reform is heartening, but said caution remains our watchword.

"Both the House and Senate versions are thick with technical detail and – as always – the bills are subject to changes during debate on the floor of the Senate or House, or in a conference committee to work out conflicts between the two chambers," Young said. "That is the time when a rapid response from our e-Activists will be most valuable."

NALC's legislative team will continue to closely review the legislative language and monitor the progress of the legislation in both chambers.

 

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  June 28-July 4 !
  AFL-CIO Launches Campaign
for Workers' Freedom
   

Voice@WorkCampaign logoThe AFL-CIO is launching a Voice@Work Campaign with a Week of Action June 28-July 4 during which union members are being urged to push for restoration of workers' freedom to form unions.

Focus of the effort is passage of the Employee Free Choice Act, co-authored by Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-MA) and Rep. George Miller (D-CA). The bills (S. 1925) and (H.R. 3619) would require companies to recognize unions when a majority of employees sign authorization cards, and require mediation and binding arbitration if an initial contract agreement is not reached within a year.

Union members are asked to contact Sen. John Kerry (D-MA), the Democrat presidential candidate, to thank him for his support of the legislation, and to contact President Bush to urge him to join in backing the legislation. Further information can be obtained on the AFL-CIO website: www.aflcio.org/voiceatwork.

 

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