Video: Long Career with Postal Service Inspiring a Decatur Man’s Music

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DECATUR — Tracy Osborne never knows exactly when inspiration will strike.

A postal worker of 28 years, Osborne has learned that all that walking from house-to-house leaves a lot of time for the mind to wander.

“When I’m walking, delivering the mail I get the creative juices flowing,” he said.

By night, he turns in his uniform, scanner, and mail bag for a guitar, an amp, and a microphone, satisfying a musical interest that he says began when he first saw the Beatles. Continue reading

Rally to save the postal service celebrates Postal Heritage Day

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From Communities and Postal Workers United:

Dozens of postal workers, retirees, and community allies turned out this afternoon to celebrate the 241st birthday of the US Post Office. Postal unions have called on President Obama to declare July 26th Postal Heritage Day.

Chanting, marching through the Main Post Office in downtown Portland, singing and eating birthday cake, the crowd listened to postal defenders, including Benjamin Franklin, the first postmaster general in 1775. Continue reading

Video: USPS in no hurry to reopen flood damaged post offices in Texas

GRIMES & BRAZOS COUNTY – The U.S. Postal Service says they will not rush reopening the Iola and Kurten post offices.

Both locations have been closed since flooding occurred in May.At least 200 people who have rented boxes at the offices, are now advised to travel to North Zulch to pick up their mail.

Customers we spoke with today are fed up with the commute.

Continue reading

Video: Mail thieves active in Fairbanks area

We reported yesterday that a man living north of Fairbanks told us that people in that area were having mail disappear from their mail boxes on the Elliott Highway.

He said he reported to troopers that someone stole a letter he received that had a credit card in it, and that the credit card had been used to make illegal purchases.

A woman who lives on the old Steese said that she saw several men taking mail from mailboxes and reported it to troopers last month.

Source: Mail Theft Update | Webcenter11.com

Postal worker among nine charged with shipping cocaine through the mail

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Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Philip R. Bartlett, Inspector-in-Charge of the New York Office of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (“USPIS”), and James J. Hunt, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration (“DEA”), announced the unsealing of an indictment charging nine defendants with conspiring to distribute kilogram quantities of cocaine, and in particular, shipping the cocaine from Puerto Rico to New York City through the United States Postal Service (“USPS”) mail system.  Seven of the defendants were taken into federal custody this morning and will be presented this afternoon in Manhattan federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ronald L. Ellis.  Two defendants remain at large. Continue reading

President Obama Honors Postal Heritage Day

President Obama in honoring Postal Heritage Day, July 26, writing a tribute to the Postal Service and the workers who carry out its mission. July 26 has been designated Postal Heritage Day because it is the day in 1775 when the Second Continental Congress established the U.S. Post Office and named Benjamin Franklin the nation’s first Postmaster General.

Now, 241 years later, postal workers are continuing the fight for a vibrant, public Postal Service.

Obama wrote:“I send greetings to all those marking Postal Heritage Day.    

“Across bustling cities and rural towns, postal workers have long worked to connect Americans with relatives and loved ones, friends new and old, business and government leaders – and even Presidents. The task of delivering mail is as old as our Nation itself, and enduring snow and heat, rain and gloom, our postal workers have since striven to ensure that the movement of ideas, information, and goods remains quick and affordable.

“On Postal Heritage Day, we are reminded of the rich history of the United States Postal Service and of how far we have come since the first mail carriers moved westward to map out new routes and frontiers of a growing Nation. Our postal workers deserve to be recognized for the essential services they have provided our Nation and for their efforts to ensure minorities and veterans are included in our workforce. I join many people across America in extending my gratitude to all those who carry out the important work of the United States Postal Service.

“As you celebrate the special place USPS holds in our country, I wish you all the best.”

 

Hacker says he compromised USPS servers, offers to sell login credentials

From Business Insider:

A hacker is selling stolen credentials that purportedly give access to servers of the US Navy, Centers for Disease Control, US Postal Service, and other US government sites.

Listings for the accounts were found recently by Tech Insider on a dark web marketplace called The Real Deal.

The US Postal Service told Tech Insider its corporate information security office would conduct “criminal investigations into these activities.”

Read more at Business Insider

APWU Joins Boycott of Made-in-Mexico Nabisco Products

07/26/2016The APWU is urging union members to join a boycott of Mexican-made Nabisco products launched by the Bakery, Confectioners, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union (BCTGM) and endorsed by the AFL-CIO.

Affected products include Oreos, Newtons, Chips Ahoy, Honey Grahams, Animal Crackers, Ritz Crackers, Premium, Belvita, Lorna Doone, Teddy Grahams, Honey Maid and Wheat Thins.

BCTGM, which represents nearly 4,000 workers who make Nabisco snack products, launched the“Check the Label” campaign to stop Nabisco, which is owned by Mondelez International, from outsourcing jobs. The union is urging consumers to boycott Mexican-made Nabisco products and instead buy snacks that are union-made in America.

Corporate Greed Cheats Chicago

Mondelez CEO Irene Rosenfeld rakes in $19.67 million annually, or 300 times more than her employees, according to AFL-CIO Executive Paywatch – but she decided to fatten her paycheck even more at the expense of union workers.

Last summer, Rosenfeld opted against making a much-needed $130 million upgrade to the company’s plant in Chicago’s Southwest Side. At the time, the Chicago plant was the company’s largest bakery in the country, employing 1,200 workers. It had been open since the 1950s, supporting generations of working families.

Rosenfeld’s excuse was that the company and the union could not come to a contract agreement.

But workers say that outsourcing jobs was the plan all along: The contract between Mondelez and the workers represented by BCTGM didn’t expire until Feb. 29, 2016 – nearly six months after Rosenfeld’s decision.

Instead of upgrading the facility, Mondelez shut down nine of the 16 Chicago production lines in August 2015, and relocated them to new facilities in Monterrey and Salinas, Mexico. Six hundred jobs were lost.

Workers at the plants in Mexico earn pay so low that the minimum wage is measured by the day, not the hour, and stands at a paltry $4 per day.

Laid-off workers lamented about the difficulty of finding other jobs, especially union jobs.

Jesus Herrera, 26, is a former Mondelez employee and a father of three. “I jumped at it when this job came up,” he told the Chicago Sun-Times. “Great pay and benefits, insurance for my family, you know? That was the best part. The difficulty isn’t so much finding another job. For me, it’s finding another job with good benefits.”

His co-worker, Mike Smith, 59, agreed, “Six hundred people are losing their jobs, and all we have to look forward to is unemployment — no separation package,” said Smith in the Chicago Sun-Times. “What happened to good corporate citizenship? The desire for cheap labor to produce products has left we, American workers, at a disadvantage. What about our American dream?”

There are two ways to find out of a Nabisco product was made in Mexico.

  1. Check for the words “Made in Mexico” on the packaging.
  2. Check the plant identification code. Don’t buy products labeled “MM” (Monterey, Mexico) or “MS” (Salinas, Mexico). Buy AE (Chicago), AH (Portland, OR), AP (Fairlawn, NJ), AX (Atlanta), AZ (Richmond, VA) or XL (Naperville, IL).

“This is an example of corporate greed run amok and globalization gone wild,” said APWU President Mark Dimondstein. “The company cares only about shareholders, not workers or our communities.

“The APWU supports our sister and brother Nabisco workers in the fight for jobs,” he added. “I urge all postal workers, friends and allies to join the boycott and participate in other actions called by the BCTGM and Nabisco workers.”

Click here for more info.

APWU: In the Dog Days of Summer USPS Drivers Want Air

07/25/2016With temperatures soaring, many Motor Vehicle Service Craft employees have complained about management’s failure to maintain functioning air conditioning systems in their trucks – and the APWU has addressed those complaints at the national level, Craft Director Michael O. Foster reports.

“The timely repair of air conditioning has been an issue since the USPS agreed to install air conditioning in the 1998 Collective Bargaining Agreement,” Foster said.

apwudefaultIn response to the union’s recent objections over the Postal Service’s failure to adhere to the contract, management at USPS headquarters issued a letter to the field on July 8 [PDF], instructing the managers of Vehicle Maintenance Facilities, Vehicle Operations and Fleet Operations that:

“Effective immediately, cargo vans, tractors, and spotters purchased with air conditioning must have the air conditioning system maintained as designed. During summer months or times when the temperature is expected to exceed 75 degrees, these vehicles must have the air conditioning system repaired within one week from the date the VMF is notified. In the event parts must be ordered to perform the repair, the vehicle may be placed back in service for a period of up to one week until the parts are received. When the heat index is above 100, the vehicle must be repaired immediately and not delayed for the one week. Parts must be ordered in an express manner when the weather conditions are expected to exceed 75 degrees. Air conditioning repairs may be postponed until the scheduled maintenance occurs when that delay would exceed the one week time frame if temperatures are projected to remain below 75 degrees for the entire time until the next scheduled maintenance.”

“This policy is the latest effort to provide functioning air conditioning in PVS vehicles for the health and welfare of our drivers,” Foster said.