February 6, 2013

Post Office To End Saturday Delivery Of Letters

The announcement that the Post Office will be ending Saturday delivery of letters comes as postal workers are organizing nationally against closures and cutbacks. Last week Congressman Schrader got an earful about this at his Salem town hall. There are good articles  here and here.

National Association of Letter Carriers President Fredric Rolando issued the following statement on Postmaster General Pat Donahoe’s plan to eliminate Saturday mail delivery today:

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe’s plan to end Saturday delivery is a disastrous idea that would have a profoundly negative effect on the Postal Service and on millions of customers. It would be particularly harmful to small businesses, rural communities, the elderly, the disabled and others who depend on Saturday delivery for commerce and communication.

Slowing mail service and degrading our unmatchable last-mile delivery network are not the answers to the Postal Service’s financial problems. If the Postmaster General is unwilling or unable to develop a smart growth strategy that serves the nearly 50% of business mailers that want to keep six-day service, and if he arrogantly thinks he is above the law or has the right to decide policy matters that should be left to Congress, it is time for him to step down.

This maneuver by Mr. Donahoe flouts the will of Congress, as expressed annually over the past 30 years in legislation that mandates six-day delivery, which remains in effect today. In the last Congress, which ended in January, a bi-partisan majority of Representatives co-sponsored legislation backing the continuation of Saturday delivery.

This misguided and counterproductive decision is in keeping with the Postmaster General’s slash-and-shrink approach to dealing with the Postal Service’s financial challenges. Instead of offering a real business plan to tap the full potential of this essential American institution, he is offering a plan that will doom USPS to failure.

The National Association of Letter Carriers has tried time and again to work with Postal Service management to pursue growth measures and cost savings, but it has become clear that the Postal Service leadership’s only strategy is to gut the unique postal network that provides us with the world’s most affordable delivery service, and to eliminate the services on which Americans depend.

America’s letter carriers condemn this reckless plan in the strongest terms. We call for the immediate removal of the postmaster general, who has lost the confidence of the men and women who deliver for America every day. And we urge Congress to develop a real reform plan that gives the Postal Service the freedom to grow and innovate in the digital era.

The following also came from the rank-and-file union movement to save postal services:

As you may know, Communities and Postal Workers United has called for a National Day of Action to Save America's Postal Service on Sunday, March 17th (anniversary of the Great Postal Strike) with the theme "Catch the Spirit of 1970!"

Our initial call was for a National March on Washington, as called for in 2012 NALC & APWU convention resolutions.

Our current call is for local actions in as many cities as possible.

Now that Donahoe has announced his intention to decimate the carrier craft, will you consider calling a national day of resistance?

Whether a March on Washington or a day of local actions, we will do our utmost to build it broad and deep to show Congress, the Post Master General and the President the massive support of the American people for their constitutionally mandated postal service.

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