Locals Urged to Grieve Violations Associated with e-CBM Program

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Maintenance Division officers are encouraging local unions to file grievances protesting contract violations that occur as management implements the electronic Condition Based Maintenance (e-CBM) program in their facilities. The local grievances will support a national-level dispute over the program, which was filed Feb. 23, 2009.

The union contends that the e-CBM program violates Article 7 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement by improperly directing non-Maintenance Operations Support (MOS) personnel to perform MOS duties. A July 29, 2009, Statement of Issues and Facts elaborates on the union’s contentions.

Management first notified the APWU in June 2008 that the e-CBM program would be implemented on Automated Package Processing (APP) machines, which were deployed in only a few sites at the time. Since then postal officials have begun applying the e-CBM program to additional pieces of equipment.

Upon notification of the program, Maintenance Division officers initiated discussions with the Postal Service regarding the improper assignment of Electronic Technicians, Mail Processing Equipment Mechanics and Maintenance Mechanics to the MOS duties associated with the program, including data input for completed work assignments, partially completed assignments, and bypassed assignments. We also noted a potential violation of Arbitrator Das’ ruling in case numbers Q98C-4Q-C00183263 and Q98C-4Q-C01002200, which addressed the proper assignment of work in the Maintenance Craft.

The union’s dispute challenges management’s assertion that the MOS duties are minimal. The grievance notes the amount of time it takes Maintenance personnel to log-in to the e-CBM system, input the required data, and enter records of the work once it has been completed. The union seeks compensation for MOS personnel for the duties that have been improperly removed from their assignments, and contends that the staffing of ETs, MPEs and MMs must be adjusted to reflect the additional duties.

Grievances should be filed at the local level as equipment is brought online to the e-CBM program. At least three grievances should be filed for each piece of equipment:

  1. Protesting the reassignment of MOS duties, in violation of the provisions of Article 7 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, which prohibit the crossing of occupational groups; Locals should request compensation for MOS personnel. 
  2. Requesting adjustment of the staffing packages for Maintenance personnel who are required to perform the additional duties previously performed by the MOS operations;
  3. Protesting violations of the Article 7 prohibition on crossing occupational groups, as well as Arbitrator Das’ ruling regarding the assignment of minimum skills needed to perform work.

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