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We Manage Mail Delivery—We Don’t Deliver Mail!
By Richard L. Green Jr.
NAPS Eastern Region Vice President
At the recent NAPS national convention in New Orleans, I was concerned to hear our members describe what a day at work looked like for a delivery supervisor in Customer Service. It went a little like this:
Wait! Go deliver mail?! Let’s make sure we understand the role of a Customer Service supervisor. Our job is to manage the processing and delivery of mail by craft employees—not to deliver the mail!
Some individuals in local senior leadership clearly have forgotten our roles. Through the consultative process, NAPS asked USPS Headquarters Labor Relations for an explanation regarding when EAS (non-bargaining) employees can be forced, coerced or otherwise required to case routes or deliver mail. This is the response we received from the Nov. 22, 2021, consultative meeting:
Agenda Item #14
NAPS said that as the resident officers and Executive Board members attend NAPS-sponsored events, such as branch meetings, training seminars and conventions, they consistently are hearing from NAPS members across the country that supervisors, managers, MPOOs, postmasters and other EAS employees are being forced to case and/or deliver mail. In fact, they often are ordered to case and deliver routes by senior district leadership.
This is in violation of all craft collective-bargaining agreements, not to mention how these EAS employees who are being forced to deliver mail can get their own work done and certainly will be held accountable for office failures. These demands also will generate grievance activity that managers will be forced to pay, further hurting TOE and other NPA indicators.
NAPS requested USPS Headquarters to issue directives that EAS employees may not be forced, coerced or otherwise required to case routes or deliver mail, as that is a function of the craft.
USPS Response: Non-bargaining employees only may be permitted to perform bargaining-unit work in emergency situations. (The exception is for Level-18 post offices and part-time post offices where 15 hours of bargaining-unit work can be performed.)
Those emergency situations must be just that—an emergency. The circumstance or circumstances must be unforeseen. If a facility, installation or district is planning to schedule a non-bargaining employee to perform bargaining-unit work and because planning is not an unforeseen circumstance and not an emergency, it should be reported to District Labor Relations or Human Resources immediately and escalated.
So, what I am saying is if your schedule shows you have open routes and you have notified your leadership team, then it is not an emergency because you have open routes. I’m not telling any of our members to refuse a direct order. Follow instructions and notify your local NAPS officers so we can escalate the issue immediately and follow the process outlined in the USPS Headquarters Labor Relations response.
If we get no response at the district, we will immediately escalate the issue to your area vice president. Your NAPS area vice presidents, along with the regional vice presidents, will work to escalate this issue to USPS Area Labor managers. If there is no immediate relief, we will escalate the issue to NAPS Headquarters.
This will not be a long, drawn-out process. We promise you we will fight to ensure you are allowed to do your job, which is to manage the processing and delivery of mail—not deliver mail!
Fighting for membership!
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Alexandria, VA 22314-2753