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August 27, 2021 Update from Dan Heins, UPMA National President

Posted by Frank Augustosky on 08/27/21

Friday Message – August 27, 2021

COVID Update – As I am sure most of you are aware by now, we have had a number of individuals who having returned from the National Convention in Sandusky, Ohio have been diagnosed with COVID-19.    A number of people have questioned me wondering which chapter(s) they were from so they could determine if they had been in contact with them, or not.   On Wednesday evening, the National Executive Board made the decision that we would not release the names of the chapters even though there is nothing in HIPAA laws that says we could not do so.   The feeling of the majority of the board was that with the flow of people it would be impossible to determine who you may, or may not, have come in contact with at some point during the convention.   The recommendation of the Board is that if you are feeling ill, or just as a precaution, choosing to get tested is an individual choice that you will need to make based on your situation and where you are at in your life.  

Pay Decision Received – On Monday of this week we received the Pay Package from the Postal Service.   I know that there have been a number of questions in the field about how this may, or may not, affect individual members and their current position/salary in the Postal Service.    Offering our input on this package is never an easy task.   While we wish that we could get everything for everybody, it just does not work that way.    As a Pay Talk Committee and now as the package was reviewed by the National Executive Board, we had to look at the total package and how it will affect the wider range of our membership both now and in the future not just on individual components.    I have also been contacted by a number of people who have said “there is no way you should sign this”.    We do not sign it, it is not a collective bargaining agreement, it is a package containing items that we were given the opportunity to have input on, make suggestions as to what should be included and what we would like to see modified; however, ultimately the Postal Service will issue the package that they feel is best for the United States Postal Service and all Postmasters in the case of the package we have received and we have one of two choices.   The first choice is to allow the package to move forward and consult in the future on items we feel need to be modified, or we can go to fact finding which involves the use of attorneys and testimony and then a ruling that may, or may not, go in our favor and then, even if it goes in our favor, the USPS can ignore the findings of the fact finding panel and go what they want anyway.   So, ultimately the decision of the board was that we would work within the parameters of what VP of Labor Kate Attridge has presented to us and use the work teams that are called for in the package to make future changes to continue to work to improve our conditions as USPS employees.

To share additional information on this pay package, I am planning to do two telecoms this coming week to go over the items in the package, talk about some of the items we had requested that are not covered and to do my best to answer the questions you may have.   One call will be on Wednesday evening at 7 PM EDT and the second will be on Thursday evening at 9 PM EDT.   

Here is the link for the Wednesday, September 1 session at 8 PM EDT:   

Join Zoom Meeting https://us06web.zoom.us/j/85386666371?pwd=NW9RTi9FL2lMSE5YQ0w0UmFKWG1zdz09

Meeting ID: 853 8666 6371 Passcode: 117408
One tap mobile +13126266799,85386666371#, *117408# US (Chicago) +19292056099,85386666371#, *117408# US (New York)

Dial by your location
        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
        +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
        +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
        +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
        +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
Meeting ID: 853 8666 6371
Passcode: 117408

Here is the link for the Thursday, September 2 session at 9 PM EDT:

Join Zoom Meeting https://us06web.zoom.us/j/83253647026?pwd=U0ZnS3U3VWhmYmpyUjVBS1B6b2Rkdz09

Meeting ID: 832 5364 7026 Passcode: 339955
One tap mobile +19292056099,83253647026#, *339955# US (New York) +13017158592,83253647026#, *339955# US (Washington DC)

Dial by your location
        +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
        +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
        +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
        +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
        +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
        +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
Meeting ID: 832 5364 7026
Passcode: 339955

Remember to use the proper link and if you need it meeting ID and Passcode for the correct night.

When I sent the invitation for the first meeting yesterday, I believe my note in the invitation said August 1, it should have said September 1.  Sorry for any confusion.

Legislative Summit – As we move forward with preparations for the 2021 Legislative Summit that will be held at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City Hotel September 26-29th, I just wanted you to be aware that we are working with the hotel to make sure we take the necessary COVID precautions including having masks available for anyone that needs one during the Summit and at the hotel.   The 2021 UPMA Legislative Summit is right around the corner.  Plan to arrive on Sunday, September 26 and depart either late in the day on September 28 or on September 29.  A conference agenda will be available on the UPMA website shortly.  Plans at the moment include speakers and educational events on September 27 and September 28.  Hotel reservations can be made at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City, 800-233-1234; $179/night.  The rooms are only available at this rate until the room block is sold out.

As always, take care, stay safe, and follow the guidelines as presented by the CDC and the Postal Service.    

 

Have a good week!

Dan Heins, UPMA National President