Contract Negotiations Begin – APWU Negotiating Team Delivers Opening Day Remarks

June 27, 2024

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On June 25, contract negotiations began for our next main collective bargaining agreement with the Postal Service. The current contract expires on Sept. 20. Both the union and postal management exchanged opening statements, outlining their respective goals for the next agreement, with each side expressing their desire to reach a negotiated agreement. Thousands of APWU members and supporters across the country tuned into the virtual livestream and answered the call to “gear up” with union gear on the work room floor.

In his remarks, Industrial Relations Director and Chief Spokesperson Charlie Cash emphasized the impact that the contract being negotiated today will have on postal workers and their families. The current contract will cover 200,000 postal workers and will affect three times as many people when their families are considered. “I know what a postal job can mean to a worker and their family,” said Cash. “It can mean having a respectable job that lifts up a family…The kind of income and benefits that give us a steady existence and allows for a comfortable retirement.”

In stressing the APWU’s priorities during contract negotiations, Cash stated, “We are open to new ideas, and we want enforceable agreements, opportunities for career employment for everyone we represent, and pay and benefits that recognize the employees not seen by the public every day.”

“To you, the leaders of the Postal Service,” he continued, “It is time to deliver not just to America, but to those represented by the APWU, and I am confident that they will continue to do what they have always done—deliver prompt, reliable, and efficient service to the American public.”

Executive Vice President Debby Szeredy introduced the union’s core bargaining committee. In addition to the President, Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer, and Industrial Relations Director, the core committee includes Clerk Division Director Lamont Brooks, Maintenance Division Director Idowu Balogun, Motor Vehicle Service Division Director Michael Foster, and Support Services Director Arrion Brown.

Secretary-Treasurer Liz Powell read statements from AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler, NAACP President and CEO Derrick Johnson, and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in support of the APWU.

President Dimondstein then delivered his Opening Day remarks, welcoming the opportunity to represent APWU members, and stating APWU’s clear and transparent goals for this round of negotiations.

“As postal workers pour our lifeblood into the institution and its mission, workers deserve good annual pay increases, stronger safety rights, an end to the unfair and divisive two-tier career pay scales, limits on subcontracting, a career workforce, and better work-hour guarantees and rights for Part Time Flexibles,” President Dimondstein said. “We advocate that all bargaining unit work in retail be returned to the Clerk Craft, and that all the work bargained for in ‘Jobs Memos’ of 2010 finally be returned to the workers as promised. In the light of the impact of profound and rapid technological changes on our jobs, it is high time for a shorter workweek with no loss of pay. And of course, the union strives to protect the hard-won gains and job security provisions secured over generations and for dignity and respect on the job.”

“Our dedication to the postal mission carries on day in and day out, whether in times of pandemics and natural disasters or more ‘normal’ times,” Dimondstein continued. “And postal workers have earned, and deserve, a good and improved union contract.”

President Dimondstein’s full remarks are available to read by clicking here.

Opening Day 6/25/24 Livestream

The APWU Negotiations Team enters USPS headquarters for the first bargaining session of 2024 Contract Negotiations.

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