Fight is on to save Saturday mail delivery
14 March 2013
|MINNEAPOLIS - The National Association of Letter Carriers invites the public to join in a “National Day of Action” Sunday, March 24, to show support for maintaining Saturday mail delivery by the U.S. Postal Service.
|A rally will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. March 24 at the Minneapolis Main Post Office, 100 S. 1st St. It is organized by the Minnesota State Association of Letter Carriers.
Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe announced Feb. 6 that the Postal Service would end Saturday delivery effective Aug. 5.
Donahoe said the move would cut costs and eliminate 22,500 letter carrier jobs. In response, NALC president Frederic Rolando urged Donahoe to resign.
“The Postmaster General has no growth plan. He believes in making cuts to survive,” said Mike Zagaros, president of NALC Branch 9 in Minneapolis. “We don’t believe he has the authority to do this under the law.”
Zagaros added: “We don’t think it’s necessary.”
“We made an operational profit delivering the mail this last quarter,” Zagaros noted.
Congress could restore financial soundness to the Postal Service, he said, by eliminating a mandate for pre-funding of retiree health benefits years in advance.
If Saturday delivery stops, “who’s going to be hurt the most?” Zagaros asked. “The people who are the ones who are often overlooked: the seniors, the poor, the small towns.”
Congress repeatedly has supported maintaining six-day delivery, which began 150 years ago.
“This is about the Postmaster General being able to unilaterally determine how often mail is delivered,” Zagaros said. “Where does it stop? Take a look at UPS — they’re only doing residential deliveries three days a week in some areas.”
For more information on the “National Day of Action,” and to sign an online petition supporting Saturday delivery, visit the Branch 9 website.
Reprinted from the Minneapolis Labor Review.