When the APWU and USPS are unable to reach a new collective bargaining agreement through negotiations, the law requires interest arbitration. In this process, there is a three-member arbitration panel. One arbitrator is appointed by the APWU, another by the USPS, and a neutral and impartial arbitrator is selected as chair of the panel by mutual agreement between management and the union.
Arbitrator Goldberg has extensive experience with the APWU and the USPS. He chaired the interest arbitration panel in 2016 and his award determined the terms of the 2015-2018 collective bargaining agreement. He also chaired the panel that determined the 2000-2003 contract. Arbitrator Goldberg has also decided many national grievance disputes between the APWU and the USPS.
The APWU appointed Phillip Tabbita, Manager of Negotiation Support and Special Projects, as the APWU arbitrator. He has been involved in every APWU contract negotiation since 1981 and every interest arbitration since 1984. He served as the APWU-appointed arbitrator in the 2016 interest arbitration. The USPS appointed Robert Dufek as their arbitrator. Mr. Dufek is a management attorney and has been the Postal Service’s arbitrator of choice in every interest arbitration in recent decades.
“The APWU team of officers, staff, attorneys, economists, and witnesses are fully prepared to beat back management’s concessionary demands and win a decent new contract,” President Mark Dimondstein said. “In 2016, we prevailed through interest arbitration when negotiations stalled, and we plan to succeed once again in this interest arbitration as we continue ‘Fighting Today for a Better Tomorrow.’”
The APWU demands include fair and retroactive wage increases and cost-of-living allowances (COLAs), closing the gaps of the divisive multi-tier wage system, maintaining protections against layoffs, increasing career jobs, restrictions on subcontracting, limits on excessing and expanding PTF rights.