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June 5, 2020 – Friday Message
Greetings fellow UPMA Members:
There are a number of developments this week, especially as it relates to the 2020 National Convention. While we are calling it a cancellation as far as the convention is concerned, it is actually a postponement until a later date, probably in late October. The resolution that was passed by the Executive Board was that we would postpone for the safety and health of our membership. As the time approaches for our postponement date to come up, it will be then that we will determine who will be able to attend. We could in fact have to limit the numbers depending on the social distancing requirements, etc. that will be in place. We need to make sure that we keep the safety and health of our members in the forefront of all our decisions. We have been calling it a cancellation simply because there will not be a convention in the technical sense of how we normally do things and it will be much shorter than usual, perhaps only two days at the most.
With the extended dates for the National Convention, I know that a number of chapters that had previously scheduled conventions, or those that had not yet scheduled a date waiting to see what the national organization was going to do are now looking to get their conventions scheduled. We need to make sure that the chapters have their conventions in order to allow our members the opportunity to cast their votes on the elections and on the proposed changes to the National Articles of Incorporation and the National Bylaws. As of now we have a total of five proposed changes to the Articles of Incorporation and twenty-two proposed changes to the National Bylaws. Those proposed changes have all been posted on the national website, unitedpma.org and also published, or are being published in the next issue of the UPMA Leader magazine.
This weekend opens our Chapter Convention season for the year. We have two conventions this Saturday, the Florida Chapter and the Oklahoma Chapter are having their conventions this weekend, and next week we have the North Dakota and Louisiana Conventions taking place. After that there is a weekend off.
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to be a focus and as we all know will continue to be a focus for the foreseeable future. I do not believe until a vaccine is found that this issue is going to change for any of us. I realize that states and communities continue to lessen the restrictions as the number of cases drop; however, the threat is still there and as the leaders in your areas of responsibility in the Postal Service you need to make sure that you and your employees are staying safe and following the local and national guidelines as they have been laid out. Also, you need to make sure that your employees are doing what they should.
There was a new poll out this week that measured the feelings of people around the country on how they felt organizations and companies had handled things since the COVID-19 crisis began. Once again, the United States Postal Service was ranked Number One. That is due to you and the employees that work with you and for you making sure that your customers are taken care of and that they receive all of the necessary items that they have ordered and expect to receive. Congratulations to all of you, and you and your employees should be very proud.
As the protests around the country continue, I know that many of you have issues either in your delivery area, or in some of the areas near you. Please make sure that especially your carriers know what to do if they find themselves in a threatening situation. Give them the tools they need to recognize when a situation may be escalating and make sure they know that they need to keep themselves and the mail safe. Just get out of there. I know based on the information shared on telecoms I have been on today, the Postal Inspection Service is closely monitoring the situation and if you have areas in your delivery area that are dangerous, they should be reaching out to you. However, if you have pockets within your area of influence where something flares up, make sure that you reach out to the Inspection Service, as well. They are there to protect you and to help you keep your employees and buildings safe. Please, just be vigilant at all times.
So, take care and stay safe and healthy.
Dan Heins, National President