Contract Negotiations Begin

Report by Omar Gonzalez, Western Regional Coordinator

Bosses to Union- “NEXT?”

At the start of contract negotiations covering more than 200,000 postal workers, postal bosses revealed they have little interest, if any, in bargaining over issues critical to Union negotiators.

When the Union’s Chief Negotiator submitted the union’s first proposal over “service standards and consolidations” the Postal henchman was quick to say management would listen but negotiations over this and other subjects are not mandatory. Management’s Spokesperson declared the Union’s proposal as being “permissive” a legal term indicating the issues could be discussed but not bargained over. Then in an indifferent tone the postal boss asked what’s “next?”

Other Top Priority Issues

The Union made it clear it wants to deal with consolidations, subcontracting, expansion of products like postal banking, and curtailment of approved Shipper programs.

The Union also asked management to declare a Moratorium on consolidations and service standard changes. The postal spokesperson responded- “I will tell you tomorrow”. He then failed to show up the following day for another round of talks. Management is still set to involuntarily reassign thousands of employees in April and July of this year throughout the country.

Management Slow To Respond

The Union had issued a demand for information and documentation in November 2014 on employee leave, employee debts, tort claims, retail Non Traditional assignments, hazardous internal reviews and other issues. In typical fashion , management had attempted to bill the union for the information then waived the alleged costs to produce the information. However, they had failed to produce the requested information three months later in time for the start of contract talks.

So Much Is At Stake

“Too many of our members take their benefits and contract rights for granted not realizing just how much is at stake,” declared Regional Coordinator Omar Gonzalez. “Lay Off Protections; bid assignments; cross craft work restrictions; 50 mile excessing radius limit, Cost of Living Adjustments, Sick & Annual Leave, holidays, seniority and even the very grievance procedure we are accustomed to are subject to agreement being reached on a new contract,” said the Regional Coordinator.

Battle Expected

Postal bosses signaled no real interest in negotiating over subcontracting retail services declaring they had stamps at stores for decades. Meanwhile, the Union is set to propose improvements over job placements, eReassign, seniority, excessing , non traditional assignments and other work floor matters while preparing for a show down in arbitration if no agreement is reached on a new CBA.

Scholarships applications online for the OPWU scholarship-Deadline approaching

OPWU scholarship application

Rules and Guidelines for Oregon Postal Workers Union

And Auxiliary Scholarship Program

  1. The student must be a child of an active or deceased member of a local or MAL (Member at Large) that is a member of the OPWU (Oregon Postal Workers Union)
  1. The student’s parent must have been a member of the OPWU in good standing for a total of at least One Year immediately preceding application or must have been a member for at least One Year immediately preceding death.
  1. The student must be a senior attending high school or other corresponding secondary school.
  1. The scholarship recipient must attend an accredited college, university or trade school of his or her choice. The student must make his or her own application to the college, university or trade school.
  1. The student’s application for the scholarship must be on an official application form. Completed application form must be sent to the OPWU and postmarked no later than the requested deadline. The 2015 Deadline is January 15, 2015.
  1. All questionnaires, secondary school reports and document must be postmarked in the year of graduation.
  1. The scholarship must be used towards pursuing an undergraduate degree or trade school certification.
  1. The OPWU will provide the following scholarship for 2015: 2 (two) – $1000 scholarships.
  1. The winner(s) will be judged on the basis of their secondary school reports, personal resume, commendations and recommendations.
  1. The Scholarship Selection Committee will make the decision as to awards. The decision of the selection committee will be final.
  1. The amount of the scholarship will be deposited with the college, university or trade school attended by the student. When the recipient notifies the OPWU he or she has registered, the award will be sent to the business office to be applied to the cost of tuition with the stipulation the any monies refunded to be sent to the OPWU Scholarship Fund.
  1. If the qualifying parent is in a supervisory capacity this will nullify the application of the graduating senior student regardless of local membership, be it a DCO (dues check off) case paying membership.
  1. Send completed application form and requests for additional forms to: Mike Parker, OPWU Auxiliary President, 6825 N. Fenwick, Portland, OR 97217.


General Membership Meeting–January 11th

The Portland Oregon Area Local next general membership meeting is scheduled for January 11, 2015 at 6:30 p.m.. We will also be conducting elections for delegates to the AFL-CIO Northwest Oregon Labor Council, all members in good standing are eligible to be nominated and elected.

The executive council will also be held January 11 from 5 to 6 p.m. The executive council is chaired by the Vice-President. Stewards are encouraged to attend the council meetings in addition to periodic training.

Installation of officers & Annual recognition event-January 3rd

The Portland Oregon Area Local is hosting our annual recognition luncheon this year at the Riverview Restaurant in Troutdale, Oregon on January 3rd.

We are happy to once again invite last years retirees to attend, along with the appointed stewards, officers, and auxiliary.

The newly elected officers will be sworn in for their new term of office and we will hear from our APWU national director of organization, Anna Smith among other speakers.

Meet and greet starts at 12:30 p.m and brunch is set to begin at 1:30.

29311 Southeast Stark Street Troutdale, OR 97060
(503) 661-3663

Mt Hood Clerks–Your bidding rights

Mt. Hood clerks have been given some bad information or poorly relayed information from certain supervisors regarding their bidding rights and opportunities.

Every clerk at Mt. Hood is eligible to bid every assignment in the current vacancy notice with the exception of the tour two AFSM assignments.

The tour two AFSM assignments are being posted for administrative reasons. After the posting they will be offered to employees who have retreat rights to the tour 2 AFSM section.

One clarification for tour one employees. Retreat rights are only granted to those employees who remain in section and are involuntarily reassigned in January. However, those reassignments will be to the residual assignments that remain after the bidding process. Generally it is in your best interest to bid and choose for yourself the assignments that meet your needs and not wait to be involuntarily assigned to the leftovers.

Mt Hood December Vacancy Notice

Important information for potential bidders


Please ensure that you have your new password for bidding. You will still need your pin number to set up the new password. If you have lost your pin you will encounter problems and will have to contact shared services. Do so immediately!

This is from shared services:

Good afternoon,

Due to the Cyber Intrusion, the ability to reset pin numbers and passwords was temporarily removed. As of yesterday, access has been restored, but the new pin number or password must be mailed to the employee.

Please advise employees to call back to the HR Shared Service Center at 1-877-477-3273, Opt. 5, so that a representative may assist.

A PostalEase worksheet may also be completed to elect insurance if the employee has the enrollment code for the health insurance plan they wish to elect. The PostalEase worksheet can be obtained by doing a Google search for “PostalEase worksheet 2014”.

This worksheet may be mailed to the HRSSC for processing at:

HRSSC Benefits & Compensation

PO Box 970400

Greensboro, NC  27497-0400

Or Faxed to: 336-662-4073 or (336-662-4070)

 Thank you,

 HRSSC Benefits & Compensation