APWU National and Locals Fight Back Against Consolidations

November 12, 2021

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(This article first appeared in the November/December issue of the American Postal Worker magazine)

In May 2021, the Postal Service released a list of 18 USPS facilities slated for consolidation, as part of their 10-Year Delivering for America plan that went into effect October 1. The consolidations, along with the reduced service standards and mail slowdowns, would affect all postal workers and millions of customers who rely on the USPS for prompt, efficient service in the delivery of mail and packages.

In response to the planned consolidations, APWU National and locals immediately sprang to action to protest and stop the closures. The APWU Legislative & Political Department, along with the NPMHU, supported a strong bipartisan response from Congress. On October 1, as the 10-Year Plan went into effect, 40 members of Congress from both parties joined a letter to Postmaster General DeJoy led by Reps. Suzan DelBene (D-WA-01) and Mike Simpson (R-ID-02), urging him to stop the consolidations.

“We are worried that moving forward with facility consolidations during the ongoing public health emergency, which continues to impact staffing availability, would result in further service delays and erosion of public trust in one of our nation’s most important institutions,” the letter said. “If the proposed consolidations proceed on the originally stated timeline, we fear that similar to last year, they will interfere with the timely delivery of election mail in states that have vote-by-mail systems and further degrade mail service heading into the busy holiday season.”

APWU locals held rallies and press events to raise public awareness about the consolidations and gather momentum to stop them from moving forward. On October 1, Greater Seattle Area Local members held an event at the Redmond Post Office to protest the consolidation of the East Delivery Distribution Center. The Erie Area Local (PA), Toledo Area Local (OH), and the Grenada Local (MS) also held Days of Action to stop the mail processing consolidation of their letter mail.

When the APWU was notified in late April about the planned consolidations of 18 postal facilities, President Dimondstein appointed Executive Vice President Debby Szeredy to led a National Fightback Committee with the five Regional Coordinators – Sharyn Stone, AJ Jones, Tiffany Foster, Kennith Beasley, and Omar Gonzalez. Materials, shirts, posters, a Zoom Meeting on Mobilizing, and a communication toolkit was provided for the fight. To get involved, email Vice President Szeredy at dszeredy@apwu.org.

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