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Reported USPS layoffs, changes prompt union to plan protest



CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — The American Postal Workers Union representing Charlotte said they would be protesting Tuesday morning over reported layoffs and changes within the United States Postal Service operations locally.

The changes, according to union chapter president Miriam Bell, include 308 layoffs across post offices and processing centers in Charlotte, along with a move of some mail processing to Gaston County.

The reported changes come as the United States Postal Service has made numerous changes over the years, including a cutback on air shipments and reported changes nationwide due to financial issues.

Bell noted that the changes internally have already affected service.

“We’ve gone from hiring to where we’ve had enough people who are working 40-hour weeks and having flexible workers working 20-40 hours a week, to temporary workers working outrageous hours, and career workers working forced overtime,” said Miriam Bell with the local American Postal Workers Union chapter.

Queen City News reached out to the United States Postal Service about the reported changes and layoffs.

Their statement in full:

As the Postal Service implements the Delivering for America plan, one of its many initiatives is the creation of Sorting and Delivery Centers (S&DCs). The first S&DC site was unveiled in the fall of 2022 in Athens, Georgia. Fourteen S&DCs are now open, with 9 more to open by the end of 2023.

As we move forward with this initiative, customers will see no changes to their local Post Office retail operations; No Post Offices will be closed and PO Box service will not be changed.  6

Our employees will benefit from this new model through upgraded, modern workplaces. There will be no career employee lay-offs as part of this effort. Any movement of employees will be done in accordance with the respective collective bargaining agreement.

For decades, our outmoded network has created significant financial losses, increased deferred maintenance costs, deteriorated workplace conditions for our employees, and failed to efficiently integrate mail and package processing and delivery. The transformation of our network is necessary and fundamental to our continuation as an organization and a service to the American people and our business customers.

Improving Our Delivery Model

Sorting and Delivery Centers (S&DCs) will position the Postal Service for success by:

• Utilizing existing postal-owned buildings where significant upgrades will be implemented, in many cases also accomplishing deferred maintenance.

• Allowing us to expand a business customer’s local, regional, and nationwide market reach from a single nearby drop location in shortened time intervals; in many cases same-day or next-day.

• Enabling electric vehicle (EV) deployment by concentrating EVs where electricity and facility infrastructure leads to feasibility.

• Improving the flow of both mail and packages, essential to our financial and operational future, through the installation of new package sortation machines. 

• Greatly improving employee morale by providing modern and inviting workspaces. 

• Substantially reducing costly and underutilized truck trips to and from our processing plants to achieve both financial and environmental goals.

Bell said the peaceful protest walk will start Tuesday morning at 8am at the American Postal Workers Union location near Billy Graham Parkway and Interstate 85, with a walk and demonstration at the nearby processing center.

United States Postal Service

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