From Our Future
The Postal Service's experimental "pilot program" in privatizing the retail end of the USPS using Staples outlets has failed and ended. The "Grand Alliance to Save Our Postal Service" has forced the USPS to back off from partnering with Staples in their effort to privatize and undermine the wages and jobs of USPS employees.
The American Postal Workers Union (APWU) reports that the "Approved Shipper" program will end operations in Staples stores by the end of February...
"Postal management informed the APWU in writing that the 'Approved Shipper' program in Staples stores will be shut down by the end of February 2017. This victory concludes the APWU's three-year struggle. The boycott against Staples is over!
"'I salute and commend every member and supporter who made this victory possible,' said APWU President Mark Dimondstein. 'I never doubted that if we stayed the course, stuck together and kept the activist pressure on, we would win this fight.'"
Bloomberg has the story, in U.S. Postal Service Drops Service at Staples Amid Union Pressure...
"Following union-backed boycotts and an adverse labor board ruling, the United States Postal Service has agreed to curb a controversial arrangement allowing private employees to provide its services at Staples Inc. stores.
"USPS spokeswoman Darlene Casey told Bloomberg that the Postal Service would end its relationship with Staples in order to comply with a National Labor Relations Board judge's ruling."
NLRB Ruling Came On Top Of Labor And Public Opposition And Boycott
The immediate cause of the USPS decision was an order from the National Labor Relations Board, but the bigger picture was labor and public opposition to privatization, including a "Stop Staples" Staples boycott. The Washington Post explains, in U.S. Postal Service to halt retail sales at Staples stores after union complaints...
"The move resulted from a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) order issued on Wednesday. The board adopted an administrative law judge's ruling from November. It 'requires the Postal Service to discontinue its retail relationship with Staples,' said Darlene Casey, a Postal Service spokeswoman. 'The Postal Service intends to comply with that order.' USPS could have appealed, but decided not to fight.
"APWU initiated the NLRB complaint against the Postal Service for improperly subcontracting work to Staples that could have been done by postal employees. But while the NLRB order was the direct link to the program's downfall, APWU President Mark Dimondstein said that legal tactic was just one part of a larger strategy that included demonstrations, educating customers and attending company stockholder meetings."
A Big Win
The Washington Post story quotes APWU President Mark Diamondstein, explaining that this is a "big win"...
"'This is a big win,' Dimondstein said. 'Staples is out of the mail business which they should never have gotten into. Our members take great pride in their training and their responsibilities; they swear an oath; they perform a public service. The quality of service at a Staples store isn't comparable. The public should have confidence in the mail. Important letters, packages and business correspondences shouldn't be handled like a ream of blank paper.'