APWU plans informational picket against slower mail standards, plant consolidation
REDMOND, Wash. (Sept. 29, 2021) — The Greater Seattle Area Local of the American Postal Workers Union will be conducting an informational picket line starting at 1 p.m. Friday, Oct. 1 at the Redmond Post office at 7241 185th Ave. NE.
The event will ask public support to stop the nationwide planned slowdown of First-Class Mail set to go into effect on Oct. 1, 2021, as well as the planned departure of local mail processing from the East Delivery Distribution Center (East DDC) located in the same facility as the Redmond Post Office. Both moves are part of Postmaster Louis Dejoys’ 10-Year Plan for the U.S. Postal Service.
TAKE A STAND — Union members and community supporters of the U.S. Postal Service are urged to join the Greater Seattle APWU on Friday, Oct. 1 at 1 p.m. at the Redmond Post office at 7241 185th Ave. NE for the information picket against these changes. Participants will be masked up and practice social distancing.
Also, please call Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson (1-800-551-4636), Sen. Patty Murray (206-553-5545), Sen. Maria Cantwell (206-220-6400), and your U.S. House Representative (1-202-224-3121) urging them to oppose Louis Dejoy’s mail slowdown and processing center consolidation.
BACKGROUND — In a Sept. 17 news release, the Postal Service announced “new service standards for First-Class Mail and Periodicals” that “will increase time-in-transit standards by 1 or 2 days.” Only 61 percent of First-Class Mail will be unaffected. For example, mail from Washington state being sent to the eastern United States will take five days to deliver, as opposed to the longtime three-day delivery standard.
More than 130,000 postal customers submitted comments in opposition to slower mail delivery, as part of the public comment process. Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson joined Attorneys Generals from 20 other states in filing an Aug. 20 Statement of Position opposing the slower mail standards.
The East DDC in the Redmond Facility is one of 18 facilities nationwide that are targeted to lose their mail processing capability, which will be moved to another location. Currently letters to Redmond and neighboring communities are machine-sorted in Redmond before being given to mail carriers for delivery.
The Postal Regulatory Commission’s Advisory Opinion criticized these moves, with one member pointing out that a similar change in 2012 that consolidated mail processing and slowed down the mail “promised both cost savings and service improvements,” but instead resulted in permanently reduced service and negligible cost savings.”