In the first two parts of the voices of Labor Notes series I interviewed activists involved in a diverse range of struggles and sectors. In Part 3 I am focusing on the battle brewing over the Unites States Postal Service (USPS). The USPS is facing an unprecedented attack from the right wing in the Unites States. Despite being a very profitable wing of the government, in the last quarter in made an operational profit of over 1 billion dollars, and fulfilling its constitutionally mandated duty to deliver to all addresses, the USPS is still painted as outdated and costly public service.
The four major unions of postal workers – the American Postal Workers Union (APWU), the National Postal Mail Handlers Union (NPMHU), National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC), and The National Rural Letter Carriers’ Association (NRLCA) – have come together to stop the privatization of the public post. The postal system is being attacked by unreasonable laws, such as the law mandating it to fully fund its pension plan for the next 75 years, and by the outsourcing of postal services to private corporations like Staples.
At a rally against the outsourcing of postal services to Staples I interviewed Keith Richardson of the APWU. I also had a chance to speak with David Welsh, a retired postal worker and member of Community and Postal Workers United.[audio:http://rankandfile.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/American-Postal-Workers.mp3]
To highlight the similarities between the issues facing Canada Post and the USPS I have also included two quick interviews I did with John Slattery and Darryl Ellis of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers at rally outside of Conservative MP Joe Oliver’s office back in March of this year.[audio:http://rankandfile.ca/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Toronto-CUPW.mp3]