APWU – Do Not let the Postal Service take your “Pulse!”

The APWU was notified by the USPS that they will be attempting, again, to take your “Postal Pulse!” The survey period is schedule from May 11, 2021 to June 11, 2021. We must once again clearly state our objections. Do not let the Postal Service take your Pulse!

Postal employees can expect to have postcards promoting the Postal Pulse survey sent to their homes. Copies of the survey will be sent to employees at work and home. Employees with regular access to usps.gov email addresses will be blitzed with messages to take the survey. Messaging monitors, bulletin boards, etc. will make sure you see something from the Postal Service encouraging you to participate every day during the survey period.

Management may hold “stand up talks” to push the survey on employees. Some supervisors and managers may even insist employees take the survey. You are not required to take the survey and you cannot be forced to take the survey!

Why does management even pretend to care or how you answer the survey? Local supervisors and managers are not rewarded for how well they score on a survey, but for how many people take the survey. Even if you do the survey and answer every question as negatively as allowed, your “participation” counts the same as the employee who gives them a perfect score. Remember, even if you send in a blank survey—that is considered a “participated” survey!

“The surveying of employees has been going on for years,” said Industrial Relations Director Vance Zimmerman. “Has it led to improvements at worksites? Has it led to better wages, hours, or working conditions? The answer is simply no. Management is still cutting staffing, they are still demanding postal workers work faster and harder with less resources.”

How about the new Emergency Federal Employee Leave? Are your direct supervisors and management being understanding? Are they helping to approve your leave or does it seem the answer is always “denied” when you apply? The Postal Pulse will not help solve these issues and has not solved the issues for years. Only union negotiating, filing grievances, and fighting for adherence to our contract has improved our wages, hours, and working conditions.

Management Routinely Uses Surveys Against Workers

The Postal Service in the past has used the surveys to argue in arbitration to cut your wages and benefits. In the past postal management asked 27 questions in this survey. The first 26 was about listening to you and making the workplace better while the 27th question was about your wages and benefits. They took the first 26 questions and ignored them. They then used the 27th question against the employees in interest arbitration.

And now, in 2021, the survey is being pushed immediately before the APWU will begin contract negotiations with the Postal Service to establish a contract. Will the Postal Service use the Postal Pulse against the APWU in negotiations? That is a question that must be pondered.

“I implore all postal workers to not assist management in stripping your pay, benefits, and working conditions by participating in the survey,” said Director Zimmerman. “Stand with your union and boycott the surveys!”

Only collectively demanding compliance with the Collective Bargaining Agreement and speaking together with one voice, will we force management to change their ways. Stand united – and do not be fooled by these “Trojan horse” initiatives, created to divide us.

Management may also ask people to join focus groups and participate in management-initiated events to make the workplace more “engaging” or more “efficient.” These are not sanctioned nor approved by the union. They were not negotiated and use of them violates the union’s right as the sole representative of the bargaining unit employees under Article 1. Do not give in to the cheap participation incentives like pizza, gold stars, or pictures in magazines to get you to participate. Survey participation does not benefit you. It only benefits management.

We have a negotiated grievance process and a negotiated labor-management cooperation process to address workplace issues. Management needs to be following our contract, dealing with the grievances already filed and making sure hostile frontline supervisors are dealt with. Your union knows the “pulse” of those we represent. If a local supervisor or manager cannot see the problems without a survey, then they are part of the problem.


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