Many Battles Ahead

Kennith L. Beasley

November 19, 2019

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(This article first appeared in the November/December 2019 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine) 

First and foremost, I would like to thank all of the members who participated in this year’s election. I would also like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to those who entrusted me to a third term as their Regional Coordinator.

Congratulations to all of the APWU officers who were elected and re-elected in this APWU National election. We must all now hit the ground running together with a new beginning, while fighting the good fight on behalf of our members.

It is often said in politics that when running for an office of any kind, animus can be created within the ranks of the contenders. There is also an old saying in politics that there is “no permanent enemies and no permanent friends.” My philosophy is that we are all members of this great union and therefore, we are all winners and all friends. We can ill afford to be anything otherwise.

PAEA

We all want to live in a secure environment based on the American dream. However, we currently live in a fastpaced society of uncertainty, facing issues that effect APWU members, other postal employees, and communities at large. We are fighting the devastating effects of the 2006 Postal Accountability Enhancement Act (PAEA). All across the country, we have been picketing, calling, and writing our members of Congress to repeal the PAEA and take this burden off the backs of postal workers. Thirteen years after the PAEA’s passage, the fight to repeal the disastrous prefunding mandate continues. We will be successful if we keep the pressure up!

Climate Change

I think that many of us are concerned about environmental and global warming issues. On behalf of present and future generations, these issues must be dealt with. There has been a proliferation of environmental abnormalities (hurricanes, tornadoes, unseasonal warming, etc.) that could possibly threaten our future generations. We have an obligation to protect Mother Earth by being conscious when faced with the decision between money and a healthy environment.

Health Care

Statistics say that 27.5 million United States citizens do not have health insurance, with millions more underinsured. Under our current system, we are constantly fighting for lower premiums and more coverage during every contract negotiation. Universal healthcare is a right, and the fight for it should be a responsibility for all Americans.

Other Battles Ahead

Other than the above-mentioned issues, there are many more battles that we must fight. Matters such as the proposed sale of the Postal Service to private corporations, subcontracting, and understaffing all deserve as much attention. No one can fight these battles as well as you. Let us go forward together, be serious, and never give up.


I will not miss the chance to give my high regards and adulation to outgoing Eastern Region Coordinator Mike Gallagher for his outstanding and exemplary work. As a fellow National Executive Board member, I saw how his input, actions, and command of postal issues showed the extent of his vast knowledge.

The membership, and his colleagues alike, are better off because of the work he did for APWU. I wish him and his family the best in his retirement. Furthermore, I want to give kudos to Ron Suslak for his time as the Northeast Region Coordinator following the retirement of John Dirzius. Ron was stellar in the fulfillment of the duties of the position.

In addition, I, along with Central Regional Coordinator Sharyn M. Stone and Western Region Coordinator Omar Gonzalez, welcome the newly elected coordinators, Tiffany Foster of the Northeast Region and AJ Jones of the Eastern Region, to the National Executive Board. We all are looking forward to working with you, in taking the APWU forward to more victories.

Yours in Solidarity!

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