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NALC: Arbitration board issues award

Arbitration board issues award – Sets terms of the 2011-2016 National Agreement
‘NALC achieves its major goals,’ Rolando says

Jan. 11, 2013 –The three-person board of arbitrators has issued a final and binding award that sets the terms of a four-and-a-half-year collective-bargaining agreement between the National Association of Letter Carriers and the U.S. Postal Service, NALC President Fredric Rolando announced on Jan. 11.

“NALC had three primary objectives in this critical round of collective bargaining,” Rolando said. “First, to protect the jobs and living standards and working conditions of the nation’s 180,000 letter carriers. Second, to protect the integrity of our historic institution-the United States Postal Service. And third, to work cooperatively with all stakeholders to enable the USPS to continue to serve the American public, in the internet age, by strengthening our unequalled last mile ‘delivery’ capacity.

“This agreement meets all three of those objectives,” he said.

The arbitration board was chaired by Shyam Das, a member of the American Arbitration Association’s labor panel who has been a full-time labor arbitrator since 1977. NALC’s member of the arbitration board was General Counsel Bruce Simon of New York-based Cohen, Weiss & Simon. USPS counsel Robert Dufek was the Postal Service’s arbitrator.

The award follows months of work by the NALC, including its officers, staff, consultants and expert witnesses who diligently assembled the union’s case in the interest arbitration proceeding.

“Although we would have preferred to reach a negotiated settlement in November 2011,” Rolando said, “the process worked as intended to resolve all outstanding issues and to address both sides’ key concerns while laying the groundwork for a productively innovative Postal Service in the years to come.

“I thank all the members of the NALC for their patience during this long process and for the hard work they do every day to make USPS the most affordable and efficient postal service in the world,” he said. “This agreement rewards city carriers for these contributions and sets the stage for a major comeback for the Postal Service, provided that Congress does its part to enact real reforms that will allow us to serve the American people and the U.S. economy for decades to come.”

Here are some highlights of the contract, which covers the period from November 20, 2011 to May 20, 2016, follow:

Wage provisions

No two-tier pay scale;
Three general wage increases and seven COLAs awarded

The Das board rejected the Postal Service’s proposals to freeze pay, eliminate cost-of-living adjustments (COLAs) and implement a two-tier wage schedule for career city carriers. Instead, the new contract provides three general wage increases between now and the end of the contract: 1 percent in November 2013, 1.5 percent in November 2014, and 1 percent in November 2015. It also provides for the payment of seven COLAs between now and 2016, though the two COLAs calculated in 2013 will be deferred and paid in 2014. These wage and COLA provisions follow the wage pattern established by the negotiated American Postal Workers Union (APWU) contract and the arbitrated National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association (NRLCA) contract.

However, the award lowered the entry wage for new career letter carriers (appointed on or after Jan. 12, 2013) and created a new step progression that ends at the existing Step O in both Grades 1 and 2 of the current NALC pay charts. Moreover, this new step progression (labeled Table 2 of the City Carrier Schedule) will reach the top step pay of the existing pay chart (now called Table 1 of the City Carrier Wage Schedule) in exactly 644 weeks, the same 12.4 years that applies to career carriers appointed before Jan. 12, 2013.

  • New career letter carriers hired under Table 2 will initially earn $16.71 per hour at Step A. They will earn step increases worth 2.75 percent of top step pay every 46 weeks until they reach Step O of Table 2 ($27.17 per hour)—the same top step pay of Grade 1 of Table 1.
  • Step A of Grade 2 under Table 2 will be paid $17.06 per hour and carriers will earn step increases worth 2.75 percent of top step pay every 46 weeks until reaching Step 0 ($27.74 per hour)—the same top step of Grade 2 of Table 1.

NALC successfully argued that reducing the top step pay of city carriers was not justified given the extension of street times in recent years and the increased physical demands of our jobs.

Workforce structure
New non-career category with career path replaces TEs;
All PTFs converted

Over the course of the collective bargaining, the parties worked hard to create a win-win agreement on the workforce structure of the city carrier craft. The Postal Service sought the cost savings and flexibility of a larger non-career workforce, while the union has been deeply dissatisfied with the structure of the transitional employee (TE) workforce, where TEs had no right of reappointment and no real path to career employment. Meanwhile, we also sought to convert thousands of part-time flexible (PTF) carriers to full-time regular.

The Das award creates a new category of non-career employees called city carrier assistants (CCAs) to replace TEs. Like TEs, CCAs will be members of the NALC bargaining unit and will be appointed for 360-day terms. But unlike TEs, CCAs will earn a pre-career appointment version of seniority (called “relative standing”) that will give them preference for career job openings in their installations. All career carrier vacancies will be filled by converting CCAs to full-time regular status in order of their relative standing in the installation.

This new path to career status will be extended to existing TEs as well. All TEs will be given an opportunity to take the city carrier entrance test and to accept an appointment as a CCA within 90 days, and they will be given credit for time served as a TE for purposes of “relative standing.”

The new contract will limit the number of CCAs to 15 percent of the total number of full-time carriers in each District and will allow the Postal Service to hire an additional 8,000 CCAs to facilitate the development of new products and services (such as evening or Sunday e-commerce delivery).

The initial pay of CCAs will be set at Steps BB and AA of Table 2 of the City Carrier Schedule. New CCAs will be paid $15 per hour (Step BB) and current TEs who become CCAs will be paid $16.25 per hour (Step AA). In lieu of COLAs prior to their career appointments, the CCAs will receive additional general wage increases of 1 percent in November 2013, 1 percent in November 2014 and 1.5 percent in November 2015 (in addition to those provided to all bargaining unit employees indicated above).

Although we fought hard for better CCA pay rates, CCAs will be eligible for health insurance after one year and the Postal Service will contribute toward their premiums and offer coverage beyond that required by the Affordable Care Act starting in 2014. They also will qualify for regular carrier uniform allowances and will be covered by the opting provisions of Article 41. And NALC will investigate the establishment of a non-contributory 401(k) plan for CCAs that would allow non-career carriers to save for retirement, with provisions to transfer such savings to the Thrift Savings Plan once they obtain career positions.

Part-time flexible carriers also will benefit from the Das award, as it calls for the conversion of all PTFs to full-time regular status and for the elimination of the PTF category over the term of the contract.

Job security
Ban on sub-contracting continued, strengthened

NALC’s approach to improving job security did not just involve the workforce structure issues outlined above, which will help us capture a growing share of the booming package and competitive products market. Our approach also included efforts to strengthen our contractual protections on sub-contracting and to maintain our no-layoff protections. We succeeded on these fronts in the contract awarded by the Das panel.

By retaining the historic ban on sub-contracting achieved in the 2006 round of bargaining and by adding a new Memorandum of Understanding on the Delivery and Collection of Competitive Products, the new contract strengthens the job security of all letter carriers. The new MOU ensures the assignment in city delivery areas to the city carrier craft the delivery and collection work involving competitive products (during or outside regular business hours). All of the MOUs restricting sub-contracting were retained.

Management’s demand for the elimination of the no-layoff clause for carriers with at least six years of service also was rejected; the existing provision is retained.

Health benefits
Task force offers alternative to cost shift pattern

The pattern set by the most recent contracts reached with the APWU and NRLCA calls for the continued shift of health insurance premium costs from the USPS to postal employees, as occurred in the NALC’s 2006 contract. The Das award applies the pattern to city carriers in the new contract, calling for a reduction in the Postal Service’s share of weighted average health premiums in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP)—from 80 percent in 2012 to 78 percent in 2014 (with no change in 2013), and then to 77 percent in 2015 and 76 percent in 2016 for all current career employees. For carriers appointed to career jobs on or after Jan. 12, 2013, the USPS share will be set at 77 percent between 2013 and 2015 and fall to 76 percent in 2016.

NALC resisted this continued cost shift and sought an alternative approach. In fact, the NALC and the Postal Service conducted intensive and productive negotiations over the possible creation of a separate USPS set of health plans for city carriers. The talks faltered on a number of difficult issues that could not be resolved by the arbitration deadline, including whether the USPS plans would be offered through FEHBP or outside of FEHBP. Nevertheless, both parties believe further work on this issue is worth the effort and the Das award includes an MOU on the Resolution of Health Benefit Issues that calls for a task force to resume discussions in this area. Should the task force reach agreement, the cost shift called for by Article 21 might be reversed or otherwise revised.

Local bargaining and other notable MOUs

The period for negotiating new Local Memoranda of Understanding has been set by the new contract from Apr. 1-30, 2013.

Unless otherwise addressed in the Das Award, most of the MOUs in the 2006 National Agreement will be continued in the 2011 contract. In addition, there were more than a dozen new MOUs awarded in this contract and eight existing MOUs were updated. Some highlights of the new or amended memos include:

  • A new MOU creates an Article 8 Task Force to develop and test improvements in the process for assigning overtime hours.
  • A new MOU creates a joint task force to explore and test possible improvements to the Dispute Resolution Process.
  • A new MOU regarding a City Delivery Task Force will seek to improve the work climate while investigating ways to raise operational efficiency. The parties will focus specifically on ways to address factors that create workplace conflict over daily work times.
  • An updated MOU on Alternate Route Evaluation and Adjustment Process revives the joint exploration of improvements to the route inspection methods.

A complete copy of the Das Award, including updated contract language, the new wage schedules and a full set of new and amended MOU’s can be found here. The March issue of The Postal Record will offer more information about the award.

President Rolando and the members of the Executive Council will be available to answer questions from branch leaders at a just-announced 2013 national Rap Session in Las Vegas (details to come). In addition, members will receive a letter from President Rolando about the new contract in the weeks to come.

The NALC Contract Administration Unit will work with the Postal Service in the weeks ahead to assemble and publish an official version of the 2011-2016 contract, and NALC headquarters will distribute copies of the contract to branch presidents when it is ready.

National rap session set: President Rolando has announced that a national rap session to discuss the 2011-2016 National Agreement will be held in Las Vegas on Feb. 9. Click here for more information.

45 Responses to NALC: Arbitration board issues award

  1. chris

    January 12, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    As a t.e. in good standing, with 6 years of experience, I believe this new contract is terrible. I am one of the first te’s that will be laid off this coming year and the thougght of making $16 an hour is terrible. How could we not be grandfathered in? My wife has health insurance so it isn’t of great value to me. I will be making $6 an hour less than a 3 month hire for 9 months! It seems as if, yet again, we are merely second class citizens of the postal universe. The savings of not grandfathering our old pay scale are minuscule when seen in the context of the operational costs of the entire service. Why not just have all NEW employees deal with the NEW pay scale. This pay cut is my mortgage! Thanks NALC. You state that you protect all carriers interests. It will take years just to get back my mortgage payment, let alone a raise.

  2. jon

    January 13, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    I agree..how a t.e. already employeed is not grandfathered is horrible. The t.e.’s work longer and harder to cover al the empty routes’ yet you want pay them less. Well see what happens when half of the t.e. workforce is lost.

  3. jon

    January 13, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    I think a happy medium needs to be placed. Cca should start at 18.50

  4. Melissa

    January 14, 2013 at 11:56 am

    I completely agree that this contract is complete garbage! My husband has been with the post office for over 9 years. He began as a casual carrier, a position that was later replaced as a TE. For the nine years he has been there he has endured a lot – from empty promises of becoming a regular to harassment on a daily basis from supervisors. He is an extremely hard working man and has never gotten the credit he deserves! He does just as much work as the regulars (sometimes more), and yet he is not compensated the same as them! The pay and treatment of the TE’s has been unfair from the beginning and now it is even worse. On top of what they are already dealing with, now they will have to endure a pretty big pay cut on top of it, while the rest of the workers receive the same amount of pay and are guaranteed more job security! I understand bringing new CCA’s in at a lower rate, but for those that have been there several years to receive this major pay cut is ridiculous. Some of them have families and mortgages to pay for! They are reliant upon the salary that they were receiving. If a pay cut was necessary for the flourishment of the USPS, then a fair solution would have been to deduct a small amount from EVERYONE’S pay, instead of only one class of employees. Some of the TE’s have put in a large amount of time, risked injuries, and sacrificed their health for a company that has done nothing for them in return! They have paid union dues and have not received proper protection and justice. I honestly cannot express in words the anger that I feel regarding this new contract. While the current PTF’s and regulars are walking around with content knowing that they have no worries, the guys (and girls) that actually do the majority of the work are suffering for their benefit. The NALC board should be ashamed of themselves for proclaiming that this new agreement meets the criteria of every objective that aimed to address. The first objective was “to protect the jobs and living standards and working conditions of the nation’s 180,000 letter carriers.” This contract does exactly the opposite for a very hardworking class of the USPS and I guarantee that because of it, several of those undervalued employees will finally be pushed to the limit and walk away.

  5. Beware

    January 14, 2013 at 7:35 pm

    BE HEARD…. WALKOUT
    I ERGE ALL TE’S TO WALKOUT ON THE FIRST DAY WE GET SHORTED ON OUR PAY WE ALL HAVE TO STAND AND STAND TOGETHER.

    25% DECREASE in PAY, 25% DECREASE IN WORK

    I’m a T.E. and I’m glad that my Union Dues went to cutting my pay by 25%. Thanks for selling us out to CYA. This Union is a HORRIBLE reminense of what used to a great, honorable and feared group. How dare you all sell out the group of people doing most of the work at the post office. Regular carriersg get away with short routes and T.E.’s are left to pick up the slack that REGULARS all leave us at 3:30pm. I onlyt hope that the TE’s can banned together and fight for our pay that WE EARN everyday doing all the routes no one wants 6 days a week, 10 to 12 hour days, beating our bodies up with no benefits. The post office is crushing itself from within, you get the workers you pay for, $16/hour will get you a turnover rate of about 9 months. So about the time the person knows the job and can do it well they quit because they realize for $15/hour you can sit in a parking lot and watch cars. And not be harrased by a supervisor that your going to slow, and to not take a luch and just deliver mail for 10 hours straight. Who ever reads this hopefully other TE’s and hopefully the Union and the Post Office, I ERGE ALL TE’S TO WALKOUT ON THE FIRST DAY WE GET SHORTED ON OUR PAY WE ALL HAVE TO STAND AND STAND TOGETHER, they can cover one route but not 5000 routes.

    In the words of a great man “sometimes you have to stand up and be heard”. Our silence only gets us all a 25% pay cut, I would go along with 5% maybe even 10% but 25 they are asking us all to quit and thats what we need to do.

    BE HEARD QUIT

  6. TE'S BEWARE

    January 14, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    TE’s PLEASE READ
    - 25% PAYCUT AND MORE WORK THAN REGULARS DO
    - ”’IF”’ WE GET HIRED, 7 YEARS TO GET BACK TO $21.60/HOUR
    - WE GOT SOLD OUT BY OUR UNION WE PAY INTO, TO THE TUNE OF 25%
    - WE DO “”MORE”” WORK AND NOW WE WILL GET PAID LESS
    —–STAND UP BE HEARD, WALK OUT —– APRIL 2013

  7. Robert

    January 14, 2013 at 9:41 pm

    Why on earth should T.E.’s be members of the NALC? King Rolando stated that they protected the living standards of letter carriers. I guess the DPS, flats, and parcels I deliver are somehow different? I do the same thing, I do it better than most LAZY regulars, and I don’t mind doing it for less money, but the dismissive attitude expressed by our local “bozo” union leader in Akron and the king clown (Rolando) is unbearable. I will be on a personal crusade to insure that no new “CCA” makes the mistake of sending their hard earned money to the circus tent with characters who should never be taken seriously.

  8. Nicole

    January 15, 2013 at 4:04 pm

    I need advice….. How do I go about getting out of the union.

  9. Brandi

    January 15, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    I agree with the above.. I have worked 6 long hard years with the postal service as a TE with the promise of being regular. I love my job… Well, until last week.. This makes me feel like both me and my family have been punched in the gut… We deserve a grandfather act on our pay… I mean, our lives have been based around our income and to know that we have to do the same job for 25 % less is just a slap in the face.. I have never felt so let down in my life.. Come on PO, you can do better than this !

  10. Jimmy

    January 18, 2013 at 12:43 am

    You can only leave the union on the anniversary date of joining. You need to call HR to find out the date and then request a form to cancel your union dues. You have to fill out the forms within a specific time frame and send the completed forms as certified letters to usps and your union office.

  11. tom mc

    January 19, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    if you can find a job for $16.25 an hour leave the p.o.

  12. Teresa

    January 20, 2013 at 8:31 am

    I totally agree with Chris. I have been a Te for 5 yrs, we give the Po everything. I came to work with whooping cough because I was ordered. The PO talks out of both sides of their mouth. Now they want us to take a $5 a hour pay cut. The regulars in my office think this is funny. I bet it wouldn’t be a hoot if it was them. They take off because of a cold or leave with a tummy ache, and we clean up the mess everyday. We are treated like second class citzens by our piers and mangement. I think all Te’s should cancel their union contributions. Now i have heard that I have the same senority as a Te that was hired a year ago.

  13. Sherry

    January 20, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    As a career employee nearing retirement, I agree with most of the comments posted. Reality check: Starting pay was 14.00 hr. when I began. All carriers began as ptf’s and got the grunt work, and awful routes until we became regular and got our own routes. If you walk out or simply don’t show (psuedo strike) you will most likely be terminated. When you hired in, you KNEW you were temporary, and you took the position anyway. Now you will be eligible for benefits. Regulars aren’t laughing at the TE’s, we have all been there too. If you can find a job with this kind of pay,,,,,,run, don’t walk to the employment office….I wish you the best. REALITY SUCKS, but it is what it is. Be safe, and don’t take your work, or its stresses home!

  14. David

    January 21, 2013 at 10:29 pm

    Sherry , Wake up. You can’t compare the salary when you began to the salary in 2013. I would think that would be obvious , but I suppose most letter carriers are letter carriers due to their lack of education. Also, I believe the TE above probably realizes that a walkout would mean the end of employment. But that’s really not the point. The point would be just a little “F.U.” to the post office on their way out the door. a TE walkout would cripple many offices for weeks if not months. Sure the P.O. would get through it, but it would certainly cause a few bad days for the rest of the employees (management and union). That in itself would be major satisfaction. You also state that all carriers began as PTF’s which is not true (are you sure you are a carrier? this is information that even civilians know). You should also know that starting as a PTF wouldn’t be that bad , sure you would get the crap work and unwanted hours, but PTF’s are career employees with good pay and benefits. In addition you say, “now you will be eligible for benefits”. As far as I can tell there are no added benefits. A CCA would be eligible for health insurance after 360 days (same as now for TE’s) The only difference being that USPS will contribute to the premiums. I’m sure it won’t be much , just enough to equal out to what would have been mandated by the Affordable Care Act anyway. And I’m not sure what your employment history is (maybe you just play Post Office with your kids or nieces and nephews) But you say that “we have all been there too”. What post office were you working at when your pay was cut by more than 25%? As you can see above these are employees with 9,6,5 years of employment. They have been loyal to and worked hard for this company for a long time. their finances are probably set around that job by now. A 9 year TE has been working longer than some career employees. Maybe just wasn’t in the right place at the right time. The system is not fair and the outrage is justified. Also, “most likely be terminated” , that is not the case. It should say, “YOU WILL CERTAINLY BE TERMINATED”. and that’s fine. Do you think we’d be expecting management to chase us out the door and say “oh ok I guess we’ll give you the 6$ an hour back”. To answer my own question, no, we wouldn’t be expecting that. But it would be fun to do! organized strike or not that’s what im gonna do. or maybe just call one morning……………….”I cant come in today”
    PM: “why not”
    Me: “because I quit”
    PM: “what?”
    Me: “yeah I quit, and one other thing”
    PM: “whats that?”
    Me: click

    Yeah that would be a great call. cant wait for it.
    Well im going to bed. Its supposed to be snow tomorrow so im definitely going to have to do my route plus Sherry’s(or someone like her) tomorrow.
    Yup, I even have my own route as a TE. been doing it for years. Same Job as everyone else. I’ll take the pay cut though, that sounds like a great deal. oh and maybe even a non-contributing 401k. man it doesn’t get better than this(sarcasm)
    Don’t do it TE’s. you’ll take this cut with promises that will never be filled. you will never make regular and even if you do, that job only starts at 17$) So maybe if you take the new position and become reg within 24 months, 7 years from now you can be back to 22.15. It ain’ getting better guys, Its getting worse. What happens in a couple years when Saturdays and other services are cut; less jobs, that’s what. Now you may be in the right place at the right time, but for most, you will end up stuck at CCA until your position is no longer needed due to cut services, or Congress finally gives the OK to put this sad institution out of its misery. Don’t waste anymore time. Most of you are still probably young. find a new industry. Nobody is doing this job under these conditions for 15$ (new CCA wage), new hires will not stay when they see what it is. And it wont matter that everyone’s mail is screwed up because less and less people care about it every day. Nobody under the age of 25 uses the post office. what a sad diasaster this all is. this is not what Franklin had in mind when he created the PO. fact is, it never really has been…..and it will all be gone soon enough. Probably your retirement too, Sherry.

  15. David Again

    January 21, 2013 at 10:39 pm

    And whoever posted above about leaving the union. That info is all correct. You need to be right on top of it to cancel your membership. you only have a 10 day window to do it. I tried to do it last year right after my new term started and I had to wait another 11 months. Man they know how to get you. Its funny because I know when I started that there was major pressure to join. They didn’t let us know how little they were actually going to represent us.

  16. Mary

    January 22, 2013 at 6:31 am

    I agree with Sherry, I have been a PTF for 13 1/2 years and was just made reg because of the union. The only reason any of us stay is because of the pay. Many days if I could have found a job to match my salary I would have left, but I stayed for the money and benifits like everyone else. The current PTF’s and Regulars have all done the grunt work too. The fact that you can now start getting benifits is great!. Many people don’t have that. Throughout my carrier I have worked 99.9% of the Saturdays and 99.5% if not more worked 6 days a week and alot of 10 hour days, and yes done the clean up. I am greatful to have a job or I would have left long ago. I have also missed many of my son’s functions and life, but I hope I am teaching him a good work ethic. I also don’t ever want to forget what it is to earn min wage. It all comes to you personal outlook on life, make the best of it. :)

  17. Rudy

    January 25, 2013 at 6:27 am

    At the time of being hired, all TE’s (including myself) were
    told that we had no rights.
    We were told that it was not a Full time position.
    We were told not to plan on eating lunch.
    When management says jump we were told to say how high?
    The luck of filling in on an open route for weeks straight was
    a blessing, instead of bouncing route to route.
    The union helped TE’s keep their jobs when things got bad with
    missed scans, calling out sick, showing up late, returning to the office
    late, getting into fender benders or even major accidents with
    postal vehicles and the list goes on! So we can’t blame the “SO CALLED”
    Union. We have only our selves to blame for accepting a position
    that was shady from the start.
    Being a TE you have to put your pride aside and do as you’re told
    Being replaced is an easy thing to do.
    As far as the paycut goes, i feel its a slap in the face but maybe a wake up
    call to the reality of our rights being employed at the USPS
    For being employed for 5 years with wondering ,am I going
    to have a job at the end of my year to year contract was a scary
    thought.
    Seniority should be the last thing on our minds right now, just
    hope to be considered for employment come april 11.
    I’m one of the lucky ones that didn’t chose to finance a house
    mortgage. Times are going to get tough for some
    long term TE’s that are now scrambling and losing everything within their comfort
    zones.
    I will feel the pinch just like everyone else and i’m not happy
    with the changes, but in return this may turnout to be good for
    our future as an employee of the postal service.
    Goodluck to all existing TE’S and to all new upcoming CCA’s
    Negativity will only make things worse.

  18. newlyretired

    January 26, 2013 at 10:49 am

    TEs don’t bitch. Alot of the problems with the routes today is because you skipped your required by law lunch and breaks, which showed the route you were on as 50 minutes too short. Mgt then expected the older regulars to do the same thing or took complete advantage and added to these routes based on your times. You created these routes, live with ‘em. With that said, I don’t know why any carrier would be paying dues to this union. I used to talk new TEs out of joining because they had no protections what so ever. I carried for 30 yrs, was a steward for alot of those years. Beat ‘em up good with grievances. But that was when we had the support of our BAs and the National. The P.O. has castrated the NALC., and they know it. Yet they pressure you for your dues money. Funny how everybody’s downsizing but this union. Yep, you guys got majorly hosed. They’re gonna dangle that career appointment in front of you, but don’t forget, civil service laws are still in place. You could have been there for 10 yrs as a TE, but a 5 or 10 point veteran gets hiring preference, if not, there’s gonna be hell to to pay to the VA. I can see the P.O. trying to skirt this requirement because they already have you guys trained to run and to skip your lunch and breaks. Once the VA gets wind of this, look out!

  19. Maily

    January 31, 2013 at 5:39 am

    What if you a ptf city carrier in an office with no regular postition? How do you get converted to a regular?

  20. Pissed off T.E.

    January 31, 2013 at 10:52 pm

    I just dont understand how regulars or retirees can sit back and tell us T.E.s not to moan or bitch.. when, in your 50 year career of working, did you ever take a paycut? oh yea, a coupla bucks maybe when you converted to a regular from ptf, but gained paid holidays . been doin this since 2003, and it sucks, like the big 3, they found a way hire temp” workers, no 401k or tsp, or benifits!!, saving money big time. like the other T.E. said, its sad that we cant even attempt to get a mortgage because we dont know wats next. so we should save and live like a homeless person, because its truly not worth it. clearly we are NOT one company, we are second class to the careers. I agree.. T.E.s NATIONWIDE should call in on April 9th 2013., take a stand against bs. maybe we will get heard.

  21. UNION = USELESS

    February 1, 2013 at 5:00 pm

    I have been a Casual/TE letter carrier since 2006. I have busted my ass for this company for years and years. ***** I HAVE NEVER BEEN LATE OR CALLED IN SICK IN OVER 6 YEARS!!! *****

    Now for all my hard work and dedication I am being rewarded with a $6.00 an hour pay cut. A minimum of $12,000 a year not even counting overtime. Let me repeat a minimum of $12,000 a year! Absolutely ludacris.

    What’s sad is I just checked with the unemployment office and I will make more money sitting on my ass at home then I will working full time under this new pay scale.

    The USPS should be ashamed of itself. They take their hardest workers and essentially the straw that stirs their drink and they spit in our faces.

    Any TE will be better off staying at home and collecting then work for a company that could care less about them.

  22. Walter Robinson

    February 2, 2013 at 6:31 pm

    Hardest workers – what a laugh. Are you really naive enough to actually think that career employees have not worked hard throughout their career? Hell, I was a PTF twice…once as a clerk (3 years) and once as a carrier (5 years)…that’s 8 years of being crapped on…but it finally got better – not easier – better.

    We all hate the way USPS is treating employees – and it WILL get worse as time passes and more automation and technology takes over the mail system and mailing public.

    A TE position was a temporary position and should have never been considered a career job whereby you would get your family into debt that could not be covered IF and when said temporary job played its course. If a TE was naive enough to believe their postal managers when, and if, they said you’ll become permanent one day then you were dreaming when taking the position and taking advice from postal management fools.

    It does not feel good to be suckered but that is exactly what USPS did to many of you and still are. My advice…leave and never look back – BUT, don’t blame us career employees…we DID NOT do this to you.

  23. Josh

    February 3, 2013 at 8:56 am

    What do you call a worker who gets all the crap routes or a day of splits doing the worst hour on every route they’re given? If that doesn’t equate to being the hardest worker then I don’t know what does.

    Walter is probably one of these old stodgy regulars who goes home sick if he has a stomach ache or he can’t give enough time on his route he’ll go home for “stress”

    Wake up Walter you sound like a fool!

  24. Walter Robinson

    February 3, 2013 at 10:03 am

    Ok – fool josh…tried to be nice.

    You asked “What do you call a worker who gets all the crap routes or a day of splits doing the worst hour on every route they’re given?” – well, if their position is part time or temporary then I call them a FOOL…like you.

    Hardest worker my rear end. You meant nothing to USPS (if you have loss your TEMP position) and you mean nothing now. Myself, on the other hand…was not a fool – I sought and found FULL TIME employment when I started with USPS…not temporary. I was looking out for not only myself, but my family as well.

    Ha! you’re the one stressed child – and YOU chose to be handed that stress when taking a temp position. So, why in the hell do you think it is ANYONES fault but your own?

    Like I said…don’t be a fool again…move on with your life and forget about this and USPS…you’ll appear much less of a fool crying over spilled milk.

  25. Sarah McNally

    February 3, 2013 at 10:39 am

    Hey Mr. Robinson I myself have been a “temp” worker for the last 5 years. They weren’t offering FULL TIME employment when I was seeking it out. Me and many others like me were a victim of bad timing when deciding to join the USPS. I’m sure when you joined it took you no time at all to become a PTF. Others weren’t so lucky with their timing as you were with yours.

    You sound like a crusty old curmudgeon with your ranting and raving. Transitional Employees are the hardest workers by a country mile and it’s not even close. You wouldn’t last a week with a TE schedule and workload. Go drink some metamucil and enjoy your 3 hour lunch break while others pick up your slack.

  26. Walter Robinson

    February 3, 2013 at 3:23 pm

    Sarah – you sound like a young naive fool – and you showed it just as Josh did when you took a temp job at USPS when you could have had a career job somewhere else.

    TE’s ARE NOT, never have been , and never will be the hardest working employees anywhere…that includes USPS – they just work with more ignorance in most cases that I have seen.

    You, and other TE’s, were not and are not a victim of anything other than making bad career decisions and blaming someone else for it.

    Never mind what YOU think I sound like – what the hell does that matter? are you looking for someone to feel sorry for YOUR ignorant career/job choice? won’t happen with me. AND, career employees made a good decision to seek a job that would provide a career…not temp job NOR a transitional job…so, why fault them for that?

    Years of service has its perks just like most anywhere else. Career employees look for and seek out positions that they feel are within their health, personal, and family limits – AND they have learned how to work smarter. You, and your friends, need to learn this same thing and STOP blaming USPS, career employees, and your elders for YOUR bad choices.

  27. JohnC

    February 4, 2013 at 11:21 pm

    I’m an old vet and I agree the TE’s are getting screwed royally. Where I work we are severely understaffed and I’m betting the PO is going to hire a *&^*(load of CCA’s at $15 an hour to cut out all of our overtime and V time. I also figure maybe half of them will hang in there until about mid July or August here in Texas and the heat will get them to thinking about another career choice. I don’t really know how the TE seniority will be done, but IF you will be listed ahead of all of the other new hires, even the military veterans, as you should be, then you will probably move up the seniority list pretty fast. I’m figuring a bunch of us old codgers will decide to retire when the OT dries up completely, so it might behoove you to tough it out. You could end up with a pretty good route if you’re in the right place. Something to look into before you up and quit, although I understand alot of the trades, carpenters, sheetrockers, etc are having difficulty finding workers nowadays. Good luck, pray and consider all of your options. (Our lone TE is one of our best workers and I recommended to him he look into being a 204b as we will be needing one at this station, and the money issue would be alot better.)

  28. Bob

    February 5, 2013 at 12:14 pm

    I have an interview on Thursday and I am wondering if the new position of being a CCA1 is a better path than the older TE? I talked to someone who works there and they said they have 9 open routes with more opening soon due to retirements.

    Any advise would be great.

  29. Alex

    February 12, 2013 at 11:04 pm

    TEs lets stand and fight!!!!!! Don’t give up lets make our own union or make a group

  30. Tom

    February 18, 2013 at 9:28 am

    Bob… The CAA is just another name for a TE only with less pay. You will continue to get lied to and led on just to get you in the door as a new CAA.

    With Saturday delivery ending in August it will take you 15 years to make regular. With all the U people turning into unassigned regulars they will be taking all the vacant routes. The job will be even worse then before. You will also have to work Saturdays AND SUNDAYS! You will be doing Parcels,express and throwing mail so say goodbye to your weekends and you will only working 4-6 hours a day during the week doing horrendous splits.

    My advice is to collect unemployment which now has can be collected for up to 2 years and wait for a better job to become available.

    The new CAA job will be a 7 day work week and you will be lucky to crack 40 hours. Get out while you can.

  31. JIM

    March 5, 2013 at 12:12 am

    As a recently retired carrier I can certainly sympathize with all of the TE employees that have taken these big cuts. On the other hand how long did it take for you to realize your employer would just assume cut your throat than lose 15 minutes of their budget. You knew the union did not want temporary employees that could be let go at the end of each contract. And you knew that the clerks signed a terrible contract and are paying for it now dearly> How would you like a thirty hour route and be considered full time? Your Union won you job security a chance for regular employment and benefits in a time when almost all employees are taking cuts. It sucks but you could easily have been in a much worse position you were at the bottom of the ladder not like some clerks who had 20 and 30 years in and are fighting for hours because their jobs are being farmed out to grocery and drug stores. Like everyone else has said if you can get out go it won’t get better but it wasn’t your union who threw you under the bus you decided to stay and lie in the street. Sorry

  32. TE Tommygun

    March 10, 2013 at 10:08 pm

    Unemployment can be collected for up to 2 years?? Is that true?? (In NY)

    I was fine with what I signed up for…temp job, no benefits, worked to death for $22/hr. I didn’t sign up for $16/hr.

  33. Jen

    April 4, 2013 at 9:22 pm

    I am a newly hired CCA . I understand and sympathize with all the TEs that are taking pay cuts. I am also aware that the position I am taking will require hard work, irregular schedules no doubt even up to 7 days a week. I was laid off from my job and feel lucky to have been given the opportunity for work period. The one bright thing that I do see timing wise is from what I can see the postal workers that are nearing retirement at least in my district that I’m in is a very large amount. That being said maybe Im blind but I can certainly see many people waiting for a buyout and whether it is offered or not leaving very soon. This is a very old workforce many folks have 30 plus years and are ready to go. When this happens from what I have read we will be the opportunity to become career employees. To me this seems like a great time to get a foot in the door because they can only have 15 percent of the workforce be non career. The regulars are all ready to go just waiting to see what may or may not be offered.I therefore am optimistic.
    I would like to point out that I am not young nor naive. I came from the airline industry which is and was fraught with troubles so can certainly sympathize with the plight of folks taking pay cuts. Been there done that. Right now I’m just happy to be employed.

  34. Snojet

    April 6, 2013 at 6:06 am

    Can anyone tell me if I am able to collect unemployment? I have worked as a TE for 3 years and will not stand for a pay cut. Isn’t that why you regulars struck?
    Put yourself in our shoes. No future. I was told 3 years ago to look forward to the NEW CONTRACT. Pay cut. Does anyone remember what it’s like to deliver in the dark? Do you use your own phone? What about that GPS, Did you purchase it yourself? Have you begged for uniforms? Did the union approach you at your 1 your anniversary and explain to you how to get insurance.
    When was the last time your feet were wet because you were waiting for your uniform allowance?
    Regulars….remember us in your prayers and the next time you are not able to get a day off because of staffing. Amen.

  35. Seahag

    April 10, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    I am a regular City Carrier who has worked for the PO for over 28 years and I agree 100% with what the TE’s have posted above! This arbitration award is a disgrace. All of you who were on the rolls should have been grandfathered in and you pay should have been protected. We have two TE’s in our office and both have worked for the PO for over 8 years. They are both very hard workers, who never miss a days work and I consider both of the my friends. The PMG and the rest of the senior managers have once again displayed their total contempt and lack of concern for craft employees who do the work which makes this organization survive. You guys and girls have every right to be pissed.

  36. Snojet

    April 11, 2013 at 6:41 am

    Thanks Buddy. I will miss the friends I grew close to through or suffering.
    I was told midshift on Tuesday that I didn’t have to work on Wednesday. This is your last day.

  37. Ernie

    April 16, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    I was hired as a CCA about a month ago. I’ve worked 6 days a week and usually 8-10 hrs/day. Right now I’m making $15/hr and I’m walking about 13 miles a day. I’m seriously considering taking a job that pays $12/hr and is inside with very little walking. At the end of each day, I’m exhausted. My supervisor tells me that what took me 8 hours to do, should have been done in 5 hours. If things don’t change, I won’t be making it past my 90 days probationary period. I’m not complaining, this job is just more involved than most people think.

  38. Justin New Haven

    April 17, 2013 at 8:07 pm

    Ernie
    Welcome! This is your new reality! My station started with 15 new CCA’s last month, today 3 remain. Yesterday they did the third round of interviews to full these positions, only 8 people showed up. The job is hard and the supervisors make it harder. Just stick it out if you hate the job keep looking, it’s always easier to find a job when you have one. After 90 days you can opt for vacant routes, that will at least give you a little more control over your day, and overtime will come quicker. Like you said lots of old carriers out there, my station’s most senior started in 1974, my mother wasn’t even in high school when this guy started, they’ll be leaving soon either through retirement or death

  39. snojet

    April 20, 2013 at 10:00 am

    I hear you Ernie. That’s why many of the former TE’s opted the layoff. There were a lot of promises that, after years of hearing them, couldn’t be believed.
    No one in Management seems to know the WHOLE STORY and even if they did, there is not enough time to listen. A route and 2 hours…. is no picnic.
    Good luck. I can promise you one thing, it gets worse.

  40. Elizabeth

    April 22, 2013 at 11:40 am

    Still trying to figure out how this new position is a move towards the better?

    Serious pay cut, yet still expected to work just as hard.
    Have the option to put a hold on a route, but even with that one is not even guaranteed work.
    Health benefits after a year, which the post office contributes a whopping ZERO dollars into the total cost for premiums.
    Zero job security, still.

    Trying to figure out how the hell a family is supposed to live off of so much less, and then pay the exorbitant amount of money in health insurance premiums.

    We are the working poor.

  41. Brandi

    May 10, 2013 at 6:05 pm

    How does everybody like the look of that new paycheck we got today ? Mine sucked even with more hours than I normally work ! So, it looks like I will start pulling all of my 8y/o daughters extra curricular activities due to mommies pay cut.. Thanks a lot

  42. Grace

    June 13, 2013 at 10:58 pm

    Seriously there need to be some form of protest even if we need to do a national walk off, every cca and former te need to speak up or else you will get walked all over on continuously. These postmasters do not care about any of the non-career employees. They tell you to complete a 8 hour route in 6 hours so they can give you more work in the end. The same time it takes a regular to do a route they expect ccas and TEs to finish at least 2 hours faster. If you take a break they will get angry. They rather do all the work and take a break at the station at the end of the work day or fill out a form to get reimbursed for your break. I don’t see how the shop stewards let this go on?!

  43. eric

    June 27, 2013 at 10:38 pm

    Grace ur so right!! Its bs!! Ive been with the PO for 6 yrs n ive been stationed at 2 different offices n ive helped out at 6 other offices n its all the same!!I can do a 8 hr route plus 2-3 extra hrs n these regulars cry about being over on volume n can’t handle there own routes.. its pathetic!! N don’t forget the union doesn’t give a damn about us either!! We have vacant routes n they said being a cca u can move up n now the union claims they but there’s not an exact date!! All these upper management.. ncla n the union are useless!! U can be a career employee n call in all the time.. cry about 1 or 2 extra accountable or parcels n get 20 or 30 extra mins but yet us cca/te have to do more!! They wonder y the po is in so much debt n trouble!! Not all bust most career carriers waste so much unwanted overtime!!

  44. Brent

    August 14, 2013 at 8:15 pm

    The NALC sold out its junior membership for its senior membership, which is not surprising. It is however a total lack of vision and will doom the union to an even faster demise. Good riddance.

  45. Kris Nosek

    August 24, 2013 at 3:31 pm

    When I originally commented I clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment. Is there any way you possibly can remove me from that service? Thanks!

    Kris – We closed comments to this article – so, you should not receive any further emails. PEN