Chief officers of the Local sat down with senior plant managers on Thursday to discuss several issues. Of major concern was the proposal by the Postal Service to contract out clerk craft work at the PACC to a private company. They are looking at having the SWYB machines operated by Matheson Flight Extenders which occupy a portion of the building. We have received some information from the Postal Service and will be sending this new information to our National Officers for feedback and direction.
With the changes necessitated by the Salem consolidation several Postal Support Employees expressed concerns about losing work hours. Management doesn’t foresee any major reductions in hours and have been making efforts recently to expand the skill base of the PSE’s in order to maintain their hours.
We were informed that the Maintenance Department will be laying off 14 maintenance PSE’s because of the influx of career Maintenance employees from Salem. Employees apparently were told verbally and management agreed that written notice will be provided immediately. Additionally an agreement was reached to ensure that the employees would have access to computers in LDD and instructed on other job opportunities in the area. This is an extremely unfortunate result of the Salem Consolidation. For decades Postal Employees have been protected from layoff but the new PSE category of employees don’t have that same protection. The layoffs will occur by juniority and the employees will have recall rights for one year.
The maintenance department is also looking at reducing the number of assignments here in Portland. Because of the Salem consolidation decisions have not been finalized by the Service. The parties agreed to meet again next month to review the situation.
Many employees from the Motor Vehicle Craft took advantage of the early retirement. The Postal Service seems to be content with its current staffing and has no plans to hire additional people to fill the vacant routes. Nationwide the Motor Vehicle Craft is under constant attack and threat of subcontracting.
Difficult times for all-the struggle continues.