For those of you who are new to my blog, I am a letter carrier for the United States Postal Service. I try to stay current with the issues that the Postal Service has to deal with. One of the recent decisions that the Postal Service has made is to contract work outside of the carrier craft. Let me explain. The National Association of Letter Carriers is the union that represents all city letter carriers across the United States. The National Rural Letter Carriers Association is the union that represents all rural letter carriers across the United States. I’m sure many of you understand the views on both sides regarding unions.
The Postal Service has arbitrarily made a decision (which I feel is actually non-contractual) to declare certain areas of the United States to be under "Contract Delivery Service" rather than the traditional means of delivery service. Basically, a new building goes up in a city, such as an apartment building, and the Postal Service decides that it won’t be considered city or rural, but "Contract Delivery Service". That means neither city letter carriers nor rural letter carriers are delivering the mail to these areas that the Postal Service is declaring to be considered "Contract Delivery Service."
Which begs the question, "Exactly who is delivering the mail for these areas?" That is an excellent question. Instead of government workers who have taken a Postal Exam to discern aptitude, gone through a rigorous screening process, and taken an oath to work for the government of the United States of America, the only qualifications necessary to be a contractor are being 21 and a resident of the county. Considering the type of mail that comes through my hands on a weekly basis, this seems quite foolish. Social Security checks, state reimbursement checks, financial statements, W-2 forms, insurance company settlements, private correspondence, etc. all these things pass through my hands and are under what is known as "the sanctity of the mail". That is, while it is in my hands, it is under the protection of the federal government. And many people take great comfort in that as they send something through the mail.
Now that is all changing. Horror stories are beginning to emerge regarding the workers who are hired in at a much lower wage under a CDS contract. In the city of Orange, CA, there is a 900 delivery complex of condos. The contractor who was awarded the contract hired two young people to do the deliveries. One of them decided the job was just too hard and took the mail home with him. Someone saw a contractor in Garden Grove pick up a couple of guys standing around at the Home Depot to make deliveries. Is this how you would want your mail to be handled? I wonder how easily a terrorist could get access to the mail if only they knew about this foolish decision known as Contract Delivery Service.
You can read the article in the latest issue of The Postal Record (put out by the National Association of Letter Carriers) here at this link. http://www.nalc.org/news/precord/ArticlesPDF/0407-contractingout.pdf
Another link to a newspaper which picked up the story is here.
Sorry, Mr. Potter, but this decision will continue to erode the trust of the general public and eventual result in a downward spiral for us, unless the unions can get you to see what the plain writing on the wall is. You are breaking the bond of trust.
Have fun and stay busy – Luke 19:13
-The Orange Mailman