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Our Work for EAS Employees Continues
By Ivan D. Butts
NAPS National President
Hello, NAPS brothers and sisters. I hope you had a tremendous Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year. I am truly thankful for the positive steps forward we made in 2023 by putting more money in the pockets of EAS employees.
The latest achievement was NAPS engaging with the Postal Service on FY23 NPA cell blocks regarding the 5.7% pay raise authorized by President Biden for all federal employees. Those discussions led to a 1% to 2% increase in FY23 NPA payout cells.
We continue to look toward the opportunities this success has given NAPS and broaden the conversations with the Postal Service on two points. The first being the inequity of USPS EAS employees being the only employee group in the federal government that received no monetary recognition for their years serving America.
USPS leadership readily states that EAS pay is based on pay in similar private-sector industries, while they use the pay raise given to other federal employees as the foundational basis for increasing the minimum and maximum of EAS pay ranges. NAPS contends the agency is failing to meet that category of compensation standard when looking at similar private-sector industries.
The other discussion point of opportunity is the systematic suppression of EAS pay in the yearly practice of raising the very top and very bottom of each pay range, but not providing any compensation to employees who actually are being paid within the pay range of their particular salary. This pay is being suppressed down the pay scale to the bottom. The only way for the pay of these EAS employees to be impacted is through the NPA system, which has proven to be malleable at best, rigged at most.
In concert with our efforts to put more money in the pockets of EAS employees, we also must keep focused on the organizational changes happening all over the country. We currently are tracking two RIF occurrences as of the writing of this column.
One RIF is the Great Newark P&DC; 24 EAS employees are affected, of which 23 are NAPS members. Great work is being done with boots on the ground in New Jersey. With a Feb. 9, 2024, RIF date, we will continue to engage with any NAPS members who have not found landing spots.
We also are at the beginning stages of another Surface Transfer Center closure and subsequent RIF impact on EAS employees. While decommissioning these contract facilities is a welcome sign for USPS operations, NAPS must assist impacted EAS employees in finding job opportunities to continue their careers. I relate our work at NAPS Headquarters as having many irons in a fire with multiple issues going on simultaneously—when some things get accomplished (irons taken out of the fire), they are replaced by new or continuing issues (irons in the fire).
My prayer is that, through it all, we see a brighter 2024. I look forward to the continued work of serving you to achieve sustainability for America’s Postal Service. Just as importantly, I want to see more money in the pockets of EAS employees working boots on the ground in support of our efforts to continue to bind this country together through mail service.