Postal Workers, Supporters in Omaha To Protest Thursday

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Members of the American Postal Workers Union will rally at the Congressman Brad Ashford's office at 7126 Pacific Street in Omaha on May 14 at 4:00 p.m.. The event is part of a National Day of Action by APWU members and supporters across the country to demand improved postal services and to protect good, living-wage jobs.

The nationwide protests will take place one week before the APWU contract with the U.S. Postal Service is set to expire (on May 20) - amid new reports of severe delays in mail delivery. Postal workers will urge customers to sign postcards to the Postmaster General declaring, "I Stand with Postal Workers," and in support of improved postal services.

"We're standing with consumers for better service," said Phil Thomas, President of the Omaha Area Local, American Postal Workers Union, "and we're asking consumers to stand with us for a contract that protects good, living-wage jobs in our community."

"U.S. Postal Service executives and the agency's Board of Governors are using a manufactured financial crisis to justify their strategy of reducing service, delaying mail delivery, and dismantling a great national treasure," said national APWU President Mark Dimondstein.

"Postal workers are fighting for a vibrant, public Postal Service that expands hours, offers new services, and gives quality service to people across the country - no matter who they are, where they live or how much money they have," Dimondstein said.

During contract negotiations, the APWU has made the move of bringing consumer issues to the bargaining table, insisting that quality service is crucial to creating a strong public postal service.

In addition to proposals that would protect jobs, postal workers are demanding extended hours at post offices to shorten customers' wait time in line, an end to the closure of mail sorting centers, restoration of prompt mail delivery, and the addition of postal banking.

According to an April 27 Washington Post article titled, "It's not just you: Letters really are taking longer to get delivered:"

· A decision this past January by USPS to abandon overnight delivery in local communities is causing sharp delays in mail delivery.

· "Preliminary internal data shows that the Postal Service did not meet even its lower targets for first-class mail during the first seven weeks of 2015, with letters that are supposed to take three days … arriving on time just 54 percent to 63 percent of the time."

The Postal Service, which isn't funded by taxpayers, earned an operating profit in fiscal years 2013 and 2014 and is on track to earn a substantial operating profit again in 2015. Although revenue from first-class mail has been declining, package volume - largely due to the growth of e-commerce - has been rapidly expanding.

For a complete list of protests at U.S. Post Offices on May 14, visit www.apwu.org/may-14-national-day-action.