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Why Membership Is So Important
By Tony Dallojacono
Mideast Area Vice President
We ask ourselves why membership is so important. Why can’t we get all EAS employees to be members? Why should I be a member of NAPS? I will try and answer these questions for you.
Membership is important because NAPS fights for what is right and how we EAS employees are treated. Some employees claim they are treated disrespectfully and nobody does anything about it. If NAPS officers do not know when and where problems are happening, how can we fight for your rights? We all should be treated with dignity and respect. No one should be afraid to come to work fearing they will be yelled at or treated disrespectfully. We are adults and we should be treated that way.
There are rules and regulations that need to be followed by all postal employees—no matter their title or level. If you are a member and do not go to your branch meetings, shame on you. Branch meetings are your best opportunity to express how you feel in the presence of your fellow EAS employees. If you cannot take two hours of time out of your schedule each month to attend a branch meeting, how can you expect NAPS to help you? I am sure everyone reading this uses more than two hours a week reading through Facebook, scrolling the internet or watching their favorite TV shows, but will not take two hours a month to attend a meeting. You don’t have to go every month. But when you do, take advantage of the opportunity to express yourself and meet new people who can help. This is not just a job; this is a career for everyone—a place from which we all want to retire and spend the rest of our lives with our families.
If you are unfamiliar with where and when your meetings are, look at the mail panel on the cover of this magazine; it lists your branch number. You then can go to the NAPS website—NAPS.org—and look on the bottom at branches to find your branch president’s contact information. Call or email them; they will be glad to give you the information because they always are looking for members to attend.
NAPS offers a disciplinary defense fund (DDF) that is used when there is either an adverse action or debt collection against you. This is included in your dues; it is your insurance policy. Our DDF provider has trained legal advocates who are the most knowledgeable people to defend you when you need them. Think about what a lawyer would cost to defend you. I am sure it would be more than what your dues are for one year.
When you are at work, ask your fellow supervisors, postmasters, MDOs or other EAS employees if they are members of NAPS. If they ask why they should be members or say they are members of UPMA, then sell them on our best points. We have branches throughout the states that have advocates to help them locally. Our DDF doesn’t cost the members. Lastly, we are the largest and best managerial organization in the Postal Service—over 26,000 strong and growing.
They may tell you they won’t get in trouble. In our current environment, with complete visibility of everything we do, everyone is liable for corrective action. Give them examples, without specifics, of situations in which fellow EAS employees thought the same way. Then they got themselves in stupid situations and the hammer dropped. Tell them how, as an advocate, you either saved a job, money or had corrective action reduced—something they never could have done without NAPS.
Most non-members are the people with whom we work—not the new supervisors. We should be going to NSP and PME classes to speak and sign new supervisors. So, remember, next time you are out there at work or attending a class for the Postal Service, ask the person next to you if they are a NAPS member. If they tell you no, then sell membership in our great organization. It is worth it; we are the best organization in the Postal Service.
Remember, strength comes in numbers; when our membership grows, we only become stronger.