|Welcome to Local 308||
Brothers and Sisters,
Over the last few months, the USPS in the form of Plant Manager Patricia Becker and Step 2 designee John Hunt have met with both Unions to discuss a variety of issues impacting the NDC. One of the topics discussed was the 10-year plan advanced by PMG DeJoy and how under said plan the NDC network would be transitioning into RDC’s (regional distribution centers) and more specifically what that meant for this building. Plant Manager Becker based on said transition plan wants to institute a “20-hour processing window” in order to meet mail processing needs going forward. This would require staffing changes, specifically Tour 1 would have to add a significant number of employees in order to facilitate the proposed changes. With the influx of career employees based on the conversions that have occurred for both crafts, the USPS now has the ability to institute the staffing changes that they are looking for in order to initiate the Plant Managers plan. While this plan will create a large number of new bids available for all employees to bid on, in order to mitigate some of the overlap between tours the Service proposed changes in the start times for all 3 tours. In addition, they are looking to eliminate the staggered start times within each tour. Article 12.3B6 states;” No assignment will be posted because of change in starting time unless the change exceeds an hour. Any change in starting time that exceeds one (1) hour shall be posted for bid, except when there is a permanent change in starting time of more than one hour and up to and including four hours, the incumbent shall have the option to accept such new reporting time. If the incumbent does not accept the new reporting time, the assignment will be posted for bid. “
The proposed changes for Tour 2 are moving the start time from 8:30am to 7:00am, Tour 3 moving to a 3:00 pm start time and Tour 1 moving to an 11:00 pm start time. At this time no definitive date for these changes has been set but it'll likely occur shortly. Prior to the change occurring letters will have to go out to any mail handler who’s bid start time is being changed more than one (1) but less than four(4) hours where you will have the option to accept or decline the position with the new start time. Ultimately, it is up to each individual to decide if they are going to stay in their existing bid with the new start time. If you decline the position with the new start time you will become an unassigned regular and the job will go up in the next round of bids for everyone to bid on. As a rule of thumb, its always more advantageous to hold a bid as opposed to being unassigned. In addition, if there are residual vacancies then unassigned employees can be forced into those residuals by juniority. Again, better to hold a bid and look to move to another bid if the new start time doesn't really work for you when it goes into effect but it’s your decision to make!
Rest assured that the Union will monitor this situation very closely and make sure that management adheres to the contract and any violation will result in a grievance being filed and full remedy for those whose rights have been violated.
This is a developing situation that could change based on a variety of factors, if you have any questions, please contact any Union representative or me directly.
3971 - Leave Slips
During the recent “lull” in Covid cases before the Delta variant came into play, USPS management started issuing discipline for attendance. The timing of this “spike” in attendance related discipline is interesting and happens to coincide with some new management but that doesn't change the fact that any absences related to Covid are not supposed to be cited against employees. Every Service talk that is/was Covid related that was given by USPS management over the last YEAR states that employees “should stay home if not feeling well”. So for over a year supervisors have drummed it into employees heads over and over and over to “stay home if not feeling well” and now they want to turn around and use the absences that they told you to take against you in the form of discipline! Not only are they using Covid related absences against employees that they told us to take but they want to “stack” absences by first deactivating employee badges and making them call to be let in but then presenting leave slips that are months old to be signed all at the same time! The Service has been ignoring their obligations regarding attendance and rightly so during a global pandemic but to then turn around and use absences they told you to take without first notifying employees that they are now going to again start enforcing attendance requirements is disingenuous, dishonest and downright disgusting! Where's the required “just cause”? Discipline is required to be corrective in nature, not punitive and based on the underhanded, shady way in which management is handling attendance issues its clearly a punitive action. Any employee whose badge is deactivated should request a steward before they have ANY interaction/dialogue with a manager. Even if the supervisor says you don't need a steward, insist on having a steward present before you say anything. If they bring you to the operations office to sign leave slips that are not for time taken off in the current week, ask for a steward. A 3971 is a “request for or notification of absence”, notification being the key word. Your signature is not needed on a 3971 in order for management to take an action on the leave slip. Under ordinary circumstances its customary for an employee to sign the 3971 but, in situations that are occurring now where management didn't take any action on the leave slip for months they now you want you to sign slips so they can cite them in discipline. Shady, shady shady!
Ultimately it’s up to you as the employee to assert your right to representation. Stop thinking that you're “cool” with certain managers and that they won’t do that to you. If they are directed to issue discipline for attendance you could find yourself sitting across the table from the “cool” manager who you were just talking to an hour ago about the game or the show or whatever and they're reading off the letter of warning for attendance that they're issuing you.
Request a steward! Request a steward! Request a steward! Request a steward! Request a steward!
Each and every 3971 you are asked to sign should have the date you sign it next to your signature. If you're going to sign leave slips that are old leave slips its absolutely critical to put the date that you're signing the slip on them. If the absence was related to Covid at all even if for child care issues related to Covid put Covid related in the remarks section. The remarks section is for the employee to annotate information so don't hesitate to annotate any information you believe is related to the reason for the absence. The writings on the wall people, Covid related or not that “cool” manager is looking to use those absences to get you! Don’t help them do it, ask for a steward.