Update: No exception for USPS in Trump hiring freeze order

Update: On January 31 2017, the Trump regime excluded the USPS from the hiring freeze.

NBC News has posted a copy of the Trump hiring freeze executive order. The order, as reported earlier, excludes only military personnel. The order is to apply “across the board in the executive branch”. The US Postal Service, by law, is defined as an “independent establishment of the executive branch of the Government of the United States”. (As we’ve noted before, the word “independent” simply means that the USPS is not part of a cabinet department).

The order specifically states that the freeze “applies to all executive departments and agencies regardless of the sources of their operational and programmatic funding…” The order also warns that “Contracting outside the Government to circumvent the intent of this memorandum shall not be permitted”.

There is a loophole of sorts in the order- agency heads may exempt “positions that it [sic] deems necessary to meet national security or public safety responsibilities. In addition, the Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) may grant exemptions from this freeze where those exemptions are otherwise necessary”.

  • BH

    So, what is my current course of action? I’ve been informed to resign from my current position today. It now sounds like I’m going to be out of work. I’ve already contacted the staffing specialist listed in the email with no response.

  • Cris

    So what does this mean for CCAs?

  • Postal Pete

    Who knows? the NALC is dragging on their negotiations on a new CBA that began 11 months ago into this year and probably past the 1 year mark and refuse to inform the members what is holding it up.The NPMHU reached a tentative agreement last month that says all MHA’s with 2 years will become Full-Time Regulars.

  • Jay

    Can’t be promoted

  • Bryan Graham

    What’s it mean for PSE’s, especially ones whose initial 360 days will soon be up? Are there any protections from this in our new contract?

  • LetherNick

    Latest data from BLS (2015) shows postal workers with a median age of 50 ½. The hiring freeze only means that more work will be handled with less people. When someone retires, gets sick or dies – their work is shared with the rest of the unit. This overload will start taking its toll on an aging workforce and – soon enough, more eligible employees will look for ways to hit the door before they get sick or die. And with a minimum of 182,000 postal workers over the age of 55, it is safe to assume the retirement door may fly off the hinges. In terms of all crafts, that comes out to about 9,000 postmasters, 76,000 clerks and 106,000 carriers. (Sorry couldn’t find a breakdown for Mail Handlers, Postal Police, Supervisors, Managers, Headquarters, etc.). Round it up to about 200,000 employees eligible to retire and … a giant whole of workforce experience will suck the Service out of Postal. USPS should immediately begin discussions with OPM and get a distinct clarification or full exemption from Trump’s order. The Postal Service is that “limited circumstance” and required by law to meet its legal obligations to provide universal and quality service at affordable rates. USPS needs to maintain its ability to hire at will in order to maintain its duty and legal obligations under the existing law and provide the standards of service without further limitations. And looking at the hiring freeze from a fiscal only perspective, it is clear that Trump’s order has no reasonable justification over taxpayer-less USPS. This will cripple the Postal Service without saving a taxpayer cent.

  • F. Gordon

    “This memorandum does not abrogate any collective bargaining agreement in effect on the date of the memorandum.” The last sentence would indicate that current PSEs, CCAs and MHAs, whose conversions are governed under their respective collective bargaining agreements and MOUs would not be affected. The hiring of new temporary workforce employees may be halted.

  • Ram Hoek

    anyone know how this affects new hires still within 90 day probation?

  • chuckwalla

    You’re fine, already hired just be sure and pass probation.

  • LetherNick

    Latest data from BLS (2015) shows postal workers with a median age of 50 ½. The hiring freeze only means that more work will be handled with less people. When someone retires, gets sick or dies – their work is shared with the rest of the unit. This overload will start taking its toll on an aging workforce and – soon enough, more eligible employees will look for ways to hit the door before they get sick or die. And with a minimum of 182,000 postal workers over the age of 55, it is safe to assume the retirement door may fly off the hinges. It comes out to about 9,000 postmasters, 76,000 clerks and 106,000 carriers. (Sorry couldn’t find a breakdown for Mail Handlers, Postal Police, Postal Inspectors, Supervisors, Managers, Headquarters, etc.). Round it up to about 200,000 employees eligible to retire and … a giant whole of workers with experience will suck the Service out of Postal. USPS should immediately begin discussions with OPM and get a distinct clarification or full exemption from Trump’s order. The Postal Service is that “limited circumstance” and required by law to meet its obligations to provide universal and quality service at affordable rates. USPS needs to maintain its ability to hire in order to maintain its duty and legal obligations under the existing law and provide the standards of universal service without further limitations. And looking at the hiring freeze from a fiscal only perspective, it is clear that Trump’s order has no reasonable justification over taxpayer-less USPS. This will cripple the Postal Service without saving a taxpayer cent.

  • http://postalnews.com/ hollywood

    When veterans and elderly people start getting their medicine a week late due to staffing problems things will get interesting .

  • Jessica

    This is great news! 50 some odd districts with a bunch of so called “operations support” fat cats that may actually have to get off their dairy aires and produce for the company. Hopefully the days of these overpaid, suitcoats will come to an end. Why so many districts? These folks are not support to the field they hide in their offices and bully, intimidating folks on telecoms 100 of miles away with a complete unrealistic agenda. Its a shame how the Postal Service is being managed from DC down to the districts. Too much FAT. Drain the SWAMP. Start closing districts.

  • Melissa

    This is my question too. I come up on my 360 day next month, and can’t find anything that states whether the reappointment is considered a new hiring or not.

  • tabletman

    FYI it MHA with 2.5 years will become Full-Time Regular. Not 2 years

  • Ben

    From USPS?

  • Krista

    I’m the top CCA and their is a vacant route. Looked like I was going to make regular anytime. Guessing I won’t get switched over and will have to keep working these crappy hours.

  • Anne Goggin Mooneyham

    It doesn’t say it is a FOREVER hiring freeze. Just do your job and let things work out.

  • Bert

    Don’t resign, let them lay you off and you’ll be recalled eventually. Collect unemployment.

  • Wondering

    I think BH meant resign from his non-Postal position to be hired at USPS. It sounds like he has not officially been hired at USPS yet.

  • Ram Hoek

    thanx ‘Chuck’…PM concurs. i’m an RCA and my regular carrier gets a sub under the CBA so that language makes it feel better too, esp after buying a RHD Jeep 3 weeks ago;)

  • ziggy29

    If your conversion to regular is something that would be required by the CBA, I don’t think it would be affected by this order. I know the NALC doesn’t have a new contract but I believe the terms of the old contract are still in force until then, no?

  • Frenchie

    “Dairy aires?” You start draining the swamp, there will be no one to help you when your paycheck is wrong, or you didn’t get your step increase or uniform allowance. Who will you call? I know you think you’re a brain surgeon, but it’s spelled, “derriere.”

  • LetherNick

    You obviously did not read my comment very well. I did not say or suggest in any way the hiring freeze was FOREVER. My point was that the “freeze” should not extend to USPS. PERIOD. Previous presidents excluded USPS from federal hiring freezes for the reasons I outlined above. Please read my comment again, but a little more careful this time.

  • Angel Perez

    If I had a conditional job offer for CCA and accepted before the hiring freeze does that count? I completed every step, including backgrounds, drug tests, and etc all before the freeze…Just waiting on orientation emails and official job offer…They basically spent money on all of the tests…I am sure they won’t just throw that money invested away…or at least I hope so…smh…I’ve been waiting since July…I was planning on transfering to postal inspector

  • Bert

    Got it. Hard choice. I think The future for non careers and recent new hires is bleak. I suspect that conversions will be prevented at cost. Which means years as a non career and ultimately pensions gone before any conversions to career status. Government work will no longer be worth the sacrifice in my opinion. Hope I’m wrong. I think news will be out in a day or two on management instruction regarding job posting both craft and EAS… There is a meeting in HQ going on.

  • dean

    These problems already exist and management does nothing to fix whats broke. Break it some more and maybe you will see some real change

  • P S

    Thank you LetherNick for correcting Anne. Reading is fundamental and you were very clear about your comments

  • The Last Patriot

    Management always screws up my pay! When craft did tacs I had no issues. Your statements to say we need management are baseless.

  • M Iss King

    If you thought you had a lot of work. Wait and see how worse it gets. You may think its a great idea until your working 12+ hours everyday.

  • JY

    Ziggy, you’re correct. The terms under the current agreement still apply. In this case, the executive order does not apply.

  • Mark

    For those wondering if CCA are considered new hires; 7/2015 National arbitrator Shyam Das issued an award which sided with the post office that newly converted CCA’s are “new hires” / “New Employees” C-31979. He made that decision based on 512.313(a) of the ELM. So to all of my fellow CCA’s awaiting conversion, let prey they get an exception from the White House!

  • Becky Flaca Sanchez

    So I’m a cca and number 56 on the seniority list does this mean I will be a cca for a long while or are they still going to convert cca’s to regulars. And also what happens when we take our break will I still have a job after my break?

  • KenLynch1

    Why isn’t USPIS exempt since they are public safety?

  • Hilary

    I had a conditional job offer for an RCA and accepted before the freeze. I am at the same point as you and I’m wondering the same thing. I’ve only been waiting since 12/31/16 so not nearly as long as you but I would love to know this answer to this.

  • postalnews

    I’m curious what you’re basing that on. Trump’s order didn’t say anything about an exception for non-career workers- and he specifically said that you couldn’t circumvent the ban by bringing in contractors. It wouldn’t make sense to ban contractors but allow non-careers.

  • postalnews

    I would have assumed that they are exempt. On the other hand, since Trump’s people don’t seem to realize that freezing USPS hiring doesn’t save them any money, why would you expect them to know what Postal Inspectors do?

  • hellyeah

    7 days a week:)

  • jsjdbd

    Yes, You’re fine. There is NO freeze for us.

  • bdbsbsbs

    No, you’re fine. There is NOT a freeze for us.

  • bsbzbz

    You all should have been Mail Handlers. Unlimited overtime, make regular in 6-10 months and, work at the country clubs of USPS.

  • Cjj

    3/23/17 – Hi. Does anyone have any new information about the freeze and USPS? My husband just got a job offer 5 weeks ago from USPS – did drug test and background check and then heard nothing. Finally was able to get a phone number for HR and they advised everything is on hold due to freeze and had no clue when things would change.

  • Delon

    Same thing happened to me. Still no word

  • Sean Porter

    Was told by a shop steward that CCA will stay CCA for a very long time, pending the outcome of when the freeze is lifted. I know a guy that’s 98 on the list since January and his number just wont move. The same applies to you. Another shop steward had claimed that they want to eliminate the CCA conversion to regular in the near future as well, so the job can become non-career permanently. Not sure how true this info is but only time will tell. Good luck!

  • Sean Porter

    It will affect the conversion indefinitely! Was told this by a veteran shop steward.

  • Sean Porter

    If you’re still waiting, then your offer remains frozen until further notice.