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NPMHU and USPS Present Opening Statements as National Negotiations Begin in Washington D.C.

The National Postal Mail Handlers Union bargaining team met with representatives of the U.S. Postal Service on June 10, 2022 to mark the official start of the collective bargaining process for a successor agreement to replace the current National Agreement which is scheduled to expire on September 20, 2022. The NPMHU is committed to making every reasonable effort to reach an agreement that is good for our members, good for the Postal Service, and good for the American mailing public.

The Postal Service certainly is facing continuing challenges, some caused by economic conditions, others by decline in mail volumes, and still others by technological changes.

The national recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, and the return of the American economy to a pattern of normal growth, should mean a return to more normalized collective bargaining. This should be a time for the parties to agree on a period of relatively stable labor relations, without the massive disruptions and dislocations caused by the unwarranted closing of mail processing facilities and by unnecessary subcontracting or privatization.

The Mail Handlers Union remains deeply committed to the negotiating process. Certainly, the NPMHU will continue to work with the Postal Service to address extraordinary circumstances. Mail Handlers, as essential workers, reported to work every day during the pandemic, putting their own health and that of their families at risk.

We expect the Postal Service to work with the NPMHU to negotiate a contract that rewards Mail Handlers for the hard work and dedication that we have exhibited during the past difficult years. We expect, and will demand, that the Postal Service engage in good faith bargaining on all issues that are properly the subject of mutual bargaining.

The goals of the National Postal Mail Handlers Union in this year’s round of bargaining can be stated simply. We seek a negotiated agreement that corrects a wage scale that is badly broken; we seek an agreement that protects our jobs and improves our standard of living; we seek a negotiated contract that improves the status of all Mail Handlers, be they long-term and dedicated employees who have devoted their work lives to the Postal Service or Mail Handler Assistants, who are our newest members and the Postal Service’s future career employees; we seek a contract that minimizes the dislocation and inconvenience to Mail Handlers whose careers may be involuntarily disrupted by excessing or downsizing; and we seek to stop future subcontracting and return currently outsourced work to the Mail Handler craft.

In short, we seek practical solutions to the problems faced by Mail Handlers, so that working together we can ensure that the Postal Service and all its Mail Handler employees can continue to provide the American public with the service that they have come to expect.

The NPMHU will put out periodic updates, in the form of bulletin board postings, as bargaining progresses.

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