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A Pledge of Fairness
Brian J. Wagner
While searching through some old USPS correspondence at NAPS Headquarters in preparation for fact-finding, I found a very interesting Headquarters memo from Postmaster General Jack Potter on which NAPS was copied. Here’s the scoop.
The Feb. 23, 2009, memo was addressed to USPS officers and PCES managers. Potter referenced the difficult times the USPS was experiencing due to the extreme economic pressures. What really caught my eye was this memo’s subject line: “Collective-Bargaining Agreements—Our Bond with Our Employees.”
Potter essentially was informing postal leadership that the USPS bond with its employees never had been more important than it was that day. Again, the memo was dated Feb. 23, 2009. According to the PMG, this bond was represented by the unions’ collective-bargaining agreements.
In the memo’s second-to-last paragraph, Potter stated: “As we adapt to a dynamic and dramatically changing environment, we will, by necessity, bring even more change to our business. But one thing cannot change: our adherence to the provisions of our labor agreements. They are our word. They are our pledge of fairness to our employees.”
Unfortunately, that written USPS pledge of fairness only pertained to the postal unions and their members—not EAS employees. Postal management associations such as NAPS do not have collective bargaining/labor agreements with the Postal Service. However, EAS employees have Title 39, ELM 450, ELM 650 and years of official USPS memos and policy letters that collectively should be considered a Postal Service pledge of fairness to EAS employees.
Below are just a few of the Postal Service memos and policy letters that may be found on the NAPS website at www.naps.org, including the ELM 450 and 650 documents:
I encourage all NAPS members to make themselves familiar with these postal memos and policy letters, including Title 39 and ELM 450 and 650. Consider these documents the Postal Service’s “pledge of fairness” to EAS employees. It is imperative that postal leadership keeps these pledges as they are the Postal Service’s “word.”
Furthermore, when you read these various documents, understand they represent the law and Postal Service policies pertaining to:
What is not in specific memos is the lack of fairness to the following:
Such actions stated above or violations of any of the USPS memos or policy letters could be viewed as bullying, retaliation or intimidation tactics that are in violation of the 1992 JSOV. In such situations, members should not hesitate to report such violations and seek a resolution to the unfair treatment they have or are receiving.
Our NAPS pledge is to represent and protect the best interests and rights of all our members. That pledge comes from our NAPS Constitution & Bylaws and the oath-of-office NAPS officers take on election. I ask each member to pledge they will officially report any unfair treatment or harassment they may experience in performing their duties.
It is NAPS’ and our members’ responsibility to hold postal leadership accountable and to their “word” by adhering to Title 39, ELM 450 and 650 and the numerous USPS memos and policy letters that have been issued.
I wish you and your family a happy Thanksgiving! You have my word and pledge to provide an ice cream flavor-of-the-month recommendation. November’s recommendation: pumpkin spice latte!