(This article first appeared in the July/August 2022 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine)
The Craft had a National Arbitration hearing on May 23-24 to determine if the USPS violated Section 2 of the 2010 Contract Motor Vehicle Craft Jobs Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) by failing to convert 600 HCR routes to PVS routes. The Postal Service claims the MOU requires 600 duty assignments to be converted to bargaining unit positions. The Union’s position is that the MOU requires the Postal Service to convert a minimum of 600 HCR routes to PVS, which could be a larger number of duty assignments per route in the Motor Vehicle Craft.
Because of the many monetary concessions and work rule sacrifices made by the Union and its members in the 2010 contract, when the USPS was experiencing one of the most challenging times in their history, the question remains: can the USPS be trusted to live up to their negotiations and agreements?
There have been disputes filed by each craft that negotiated Craft Jobs MOU’s during the 2010 Contract negotiations, with the USPS agreeing in exchange for financial relief, that work would be brought into the bargaining unit. The 2010 Contract and the deteriorating trust between the parties caused the next two successor agreements to be decided by an interest arbitrator instead of a negotiated agreement. Future updates will be provided on the status of this issue.
The MVS Division has recently held Headquarter Labor- Management meetings with Fleet Management. Some of the discussions have included VMF staffing, MVS Training Initiative MOU, and local management’s authority to purchase the tools and equipment to make timely repairs in-house.
During the April meeting, the Postal Service informed the Union about their World Class VMF Program. The Union was invited to South Bend, Indiana VMF the week of May 23rd. The Union assigned a committee led by NBA Eastern Region Garrett Langley, William Drew, Boston VMF, Art King San Bernadino VMF, and Cedric Mingas Detroit VMF. The program consists of a commitment by postal management to properly staff the VMF’s, increase training, supply necessary tools and equipment, and improve the work environment, at VMFs. The Union submitted a request for additional information about the World Class VMF.
Suspension of Bench Test
The Postal Service will suspend the Bench Test (hands on performance test) for new hires, for the Automotive Technician position, and review other VMF jobs as they update these positions for the 21st century. The Union has long encouraged the USPS to update the bench test but the USPS declined to do so as long as the Long Life Vehicles, (LLV’s) were part of the Postal fleet.
The Union received notice about a Pilot Program to log vehicle repair tags electronically in the Retail and Delivery Application Reports (RADAR).
The RADAR program is an effort to improve the efficiency for reporting repair tags. The program was initiated in the San Diego, California VMF.
The Postal Service notified the APWU that they will be exercising the contract option and purchasing 447 additional Peterbilt’s Cargo Vans. Modifications were made from the cargo vans previously purchased. The APWU will participate in the First Article Testing (FAT) and inspection.
The Postal Service has informed the APWU of their plans to conduct a pilot regarding the use of sensors installed on Postal Service vehicles to improve visibility for Postal customers and internal data accuracy and service measurement throughout the Postal Service network.
The sensor is a device which can determine if mail is in the vehicle or trailer. It can provide engine diagnostics, such as idle times, reduce fuel consumption, provide real-time locations and accurate ETAs. The sensors will be installed in various vehicles in the PVS fleet. The Pilot is scheduled to last until the end of 2022.
Have a safe summer, see you at the National Convention, “Keep on Trucking”.