APWU backs lawmakers move to block postal closures

The American Postal Workers Union this week worked to rally support for an effort in the Senate to turn back the U.S. Postal Service's plan to shutter or consolidate 82 mail processing facilities across the country.

By Aug, 5, the union said more than two dozen senators had signed a letter asking Senate appropriators to include language in the next appropriations bill to preserve the current postal facilities and service standards. The letter was spearheaded by three senators with large rural constituencies—Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.).

The USPS closure plan, slated to begin in January 2015, also includes the implementation of new delivery service standards, which the Postal Service published Aug. 1 in the Federal Register. Under those changes, the current one-day service standard for first-class local mail delivery—such as within the same city—will increase to two days in January 2015. Additionally, the current two-to-four-day service standard for periodicals will change to a three-to-four-day standard.

In a message to members on its website this week, APWU asked members to urge more lawmakers to join the effort to reject the closures and service standard changes.

"Such reckless and counterproductive cuts by USPS have caught the attention of Congress, which has the authority and ability to set USPS on the right path," the union said on its website. 


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