The Scribe's Corner

By Eric Jackson

November 2017

Thanks to the retirees who attended the retirees luncheon last month.  It was well attended. We had the pleasure of the company of NALC health benefit plan Director Brian
Hellman.  Also in attendance was Region 12 administrative assistant Brian Thompson. But the overriding point was the fellowship between the retirees. This luncheon, the
branch presented service pins to members with varying lengths of service.  It’s a small token of how we feel about our members.  For those members who were not retirees,
pins were handed out to the prospective stewards for dissemination. Thanks again for all the service of ALL our members.

While the branch will always take care of our own, we still will remain vigilant of the current issues that affect our branch. The management side of things is changing at a
rapid pace.  For most of the carriers who have “put time in”, there is nothing that surprises us. It’s the same fools that we seemingly came across many years ago.  The
same tricks of the trade.  The good news is we should all be playing with these numb sculls like cats play with their toys.  We do however, owe it to our less experienced
carriers to past down the little “nuggets” of information that can greatly empower them against the bootlicking 204B types/new supervisors (that feel like they alone can
save the PO) that you don’t like because he/she flipped like a pancake on Sunday morning.  These people actually think they have more power than they do.  Please
remember, the worst they can do is make us feel uncomfortable.

The good news is that our branch is ready and able to answer any questions you may have. We are now undergoing LMOU negotiations mandated as part of the new
contract.

Stay #UNIONSTRONG!

October 2017

Some of the members of this branch have been around long enough to see many bad postal managers pass through the company.  More are retiring monthly.  But
unfortunately, THEIR culture has not changed with the times.

Some of the new batch of supervisors believe that they are SUPERvisors.  This has and will still be a major thorn in our side.  That is unless we become a major thorn in
their side(figuratively speaking).  The new contract contains for the first time a mechanism that addresses the workroom floor issues more than ever.   This process is called
JWIP (Joint Workplace Improvement Program).  In it's infancy, it will at least add to the tools that we have to fight against a culture of bullying tactics, etc.

President Massari has initiated an agressive approach ahead of the MOU.  But it all starts with us demanding our dignity.  Dignity is something you feel when it is taken away
from you.  You know what it feels like (even the tone in which we are spoken to).  We will give up until we get our dignity and respect.

The old way doesn't work because it is one-sided.  If a carrier acts in any way that offends, disrespects, or embarrasses someone in management, that person is written up.  
Then we must defend ourselves even if their actions precipitated a situation.

Most of us are respectful people who have worked under this uneven system for so long.  In the past, the only thing that got attention was when someone died or was hurt.  
That same precept applied to safety.  But after a couple of heat-related deaths,management is more amendable to the efforts of NALC.  The JWIP MOU finally addresses
these issues.  Let's hope we can move toward a better work environment.

September 2017

Congratulations on completing another successful summer. Hopefully, this article finds us having ratified the proposed contract. This allows us to focus on the next big
things (fighting the political climate that is intent on reducing union rights/benefits and bettering the workroom floor climate). But most of it starts with us. We are the
backbone of this company and we should walk, talk, and expect to be treated as such by Postal management. Demanding our “dignity and respect” should not be so
foreign to us. Everything should start from there.

So please let your steward know what your concerns are so that we may PREVENT violations to the contract and attempt to make your work environment better. We can
achieve progress if we simply become more aware of our rights and responsibilities. Management talks a good game but they tend to be reactive and not proactive to our
needs. The names of postal management are changing fast but their tactics are becoming more “backward” thinking than the people they are replacing
(#TheseFoolsThinkTheyKnowEverthingButKnowNothing).

We only ask that they give us the respect that we deserve. But realistically, progress only happens when we demand our respect. We are a loyal, respectful, dedicated and
professional workforce. We hope that management lives up to their end of the bargain!

Congrats to all the carriers who retired this year or are close to retirement. The branch will be holding the next retiree luncheon at the union hall on October 5, 2017.  Please
call the office to reserve a spot. Your attendance will be greatly appreciated. And your knowledge and experience is invaluable to this branch.

A big fist bump goes out to all the Stewards who kept our ship afloat for another summer! We are nothing without you.
Stay strong, stay unified!

August 2017

Sense of urgency is an attribute that every great unionist must have in my opinion. I had the honor of attending the Congressional Breakfast and the National Rap Session
since our last “talk”. NALC President Fred Rolando gave all the leaders in attendance great insight into the process of negotiating the latest contract and his vision for our
near future. The sense of urgency that I formally mentioned is paramount now. The political climate in Washington dictates that we are in for one of the fights of our union
lives. The proposed budget by President Trump has so many anti-union items in it that the fear is that even if we kill most of those items, some may be make it into the
budget.  To combat this, the NALC has added more positions to our legislative staff in Washington and have restructured the way our political machine will work.

While your leadership is poised and ready for the fight of our lives, the question is what can you do? The irony is that your role is done daily with the great job that you do.
The answer is to walk proudly, knowing that you are part of something so great that most of us don’t understand. You will remain professional, and hopefully let the people
that are trained to fight for you go to work. But we ask that you stay aware and participate when asked.

Under the leadership of President Rhonda Massari, Branch 725 has made a point to invest in the training of your local leaders. Now is the TIME for those investments to pay
dividends. Let’s fight for our members until infinity. After all, management has shown that they never frown at any chance to walk over us. Those days are over!

July 2017

One of the worst things in life is to be taken for granted.  Our company does this so well.  Whether we miss a scan, misdeliver mail/packages, or can’t make it to work.
What’s the first thing we hear?  It’s the ole “that is a condition of your job” b.s. talk. We also hear “you get paid to do a job”. This is as if we are machines and can never
make a mistake. The fact of the matter is that they royally screw up often.  And their fear of their bosses makes them try and take it out on us.  But we persevere, we are so
resilient. And the #1 reason is the NALC.

It’s one thing for management to take us for granted but many of us take this great union for granted.  I had the privilege of going down to Washington D.C. last month for
our annual Congressional Breakfast. There, me and our brethren from all over the state spoke with our politicians on behalf of “all” letter carriers. It’s very inspiring seeing
the same leaders that I see at all these events. They just go about the business of helping letter carriers.  That’s admirable, particularly during the vacation season.  To that
end, it was so great to attend with fellow Branch 725 members President Rhonda Massari, Belinda Tridente, , Colleen Haynes, Mary Beth Lloyd, Joseph Pease, and
Margarite Polite. These people used their own AL to work on behalf of letter carriers.

We work at a job that pays well, has many union negotiated rights. So, I say USE THEM!  The NALC (ironically) has worked vigorously to negotiate a contract with vision,
incite and purpose.  If ratified, we will enjoy all the benefits of said contract. But will it be taken for granted?

June 2017

POWER! It’s a word often used but never fully analyzed. Postal management over uses it. However, our membership has tremendous POWER also. But we don’t often
realize it or take advantage.

Our members are smart, dedicated and possess various ingenuities. Yet, our company sees fit to tell us otherwise at every chance. Let’s be clear, Postal management
spends a lot of time trying to “save” the company on the backs of their most valuable assets. US!  And then insult our intelligence with those fake surveys (that act like they
care). They have the GPS in our scanners, MSP points, and when we “DARE” to exercise our contractually negotiated right to call out sick, they accuse us of abuse. Well,
what about YOU? What do you DO? Realize greatness personified. That’s us!

Our POWER lies doing our job correctly. Aside from that, what can they do?  Now imagine if we are where we are supposed to be, we don’t walk around with earbuds
showing, and we always have our seatbelts on, etc. What could they do to us?

This great union simply grieves and wins! If we communicate with our stewards and let them do the great job that they do, then what could management do to harm us? The
most important thing we are not doing is filling out our 3996s to document our requirement of notifying management when we will not be able to complete our assignment.
That, along with calling them will sufficiently satisfy our requirements. We must get to the point of using our POWER to our advantage. Talk to your stewards to gain
knowledge of your rights. That will take away much of the stressors that we endure daily.
And to the 204Bs who sell out to get in the “club”, …    

May 2017

I received a letter from former Branch 277 President Thomas Blythe from the Chester PO. He expressed such pride in his fellow carriers that it warms the heart. His dismay in
how some of us display a lack of that very pride is echoed by many carriers. Forget management, it all starts with us. In my opinion, most carriers have this very pride that
Mr. Blythe talked about, but the company has simply attempted to harass it out of us.

The company doesn’t tell us the fact that we are the best in the world at what we do (we move more mail than the next five countries put together. We do our jobs more
efficiently than all our private competitors at a cheaper price. We also deliver the parcels that they don’t want to deliver). We only get these facts from the NALC. But the
company gives us B.S. and mixed messages about service (until they must pay a little more overtime). We didn’t make these empty promises, management did. It’s like a
parent telling their kid “I’m coming to see you” and never showing up.

But in the end, what can they do to us that they haven’t already been doing? They attack us as if we are the “enemy” and not the most important part of this $67 billion
company. You can GPS us, follow us, try to harass us out of using our negotiated sick leave, and even fail to give us our just due respect. But you will never break us! We
carriers LOVE a good fight. Postal management, respect our greatness or step down to our level and try to carry a route under the same constraints that you try to place on
us.
They are coming, let’s be ready!

April 2017

All members are cordially invited to attended our retirees luncheon on April 20, 2017 at 12:00 p.m. It will be held for the first time at our union hall on 617 W. MacDade Blvd.,
Milmont Park, Pa. 19033-3204. Please call the union office for details.

It’s time we all realize that this company has (for the longest time) been trying to squeeze things out of us that we (frankly) don’t have. First, the company went through
trying times years ago, when they tried to go to five-day delivery. THAT Postmaster General stated “3-day delivery would be even better”. But the company persevered and
slimmed down by cutting a lot of waste (including sending many managers back from some of the cushy district jobs back to the field). At the same time, they placed a lot of
attention on carriers. They put money into rolling out MSP points, GPS, etc. And with all that, they still think we are simply bums when everyone knows that the carriers who
don’t want to work, kiss the right boots, and eventually find their way into supervision.

The new management falls in line with the old. You notice them because they can’t stand for long because of their lack of a spine! Through the years, management has
given their people “tools” (like DOIS, POST and all others) to manage with. The thing is, the “tool” that they use is a hammer. Unfortunately, their small brains are
only superseded by their laziness and condescending attitudes toward us.

They have recently given their team training on “PRIME” which follows “PET” which follows…. These are good tools to use to “get us”. But they are just not intelligent
people. We will always win this fight. We DO our job daily. They can’t say that!    

March 2017

Why? What is the reason that we all do WHAT we do? The company seems to drain us with all their daily BS. But it seems to deter us from our main reason for working.
In the recent past I had the privilege of attending retiree parties for two carriers (Mr. Jerry O’Neill and Mr. Nick Citrone). These small get togethers were more than just an
acknowledgement of them finishing their postal careers but an affirmation of the friendship and fellowship that we enjoyed along the way.

The other side of the coin is the CCAs. They are young and finding their way through this vast culture of the PO. But if you talk to them and LISTEN, you will harken back to
when you started your journey and the lasting implications that have made you who you are. The members have families, health issues, funerals, doctor appointments just
like we do. They often ask questions about buying a house etc. Wow, it warms the heart. They will progress, grow their families and become the senior carriers in their office
one day. That is why we are obligated to nurture them and give them the same tough love that we got when we started. It’s THIS bonding that we celebrate at the retirement
parties.

At a time when the PO pays so much money to send out surveys that ACT like they are concerned about our wants and needs, their actions show differently. They now,
customarily use PDIs as a discipline tool rather than an investigatory process. Years ago, they would have “discussions” to get simple information. Okay, no problem. Now,
the pressure is overtly, very intimidating to our brethren.

Know your value. Carriers are the most important cog in the postal wheel!!!

Together we stand…

February 2017

Does anyone know what the Postal Plan is for us as a company? I only ask this question because what postal management says and does are two different things.
At the highest levels, the NALC and the Postal Service are negotiating our next contract. All the “nice words” are being exchanged from them and honest (yet direct) words
are being exchanged by the NALC. But the pure truth comes out when people talk under stressful times. One example of this is this past holiday season. We had just
completed our most successful season of delivering mail, parcels, and SPRS. And we got two communications from management. The District manager (actually) gave us a
nice, complimentary letter for our efforts. However, our POOM echoed those sentiments only to be followed by insulting words about us using more overtime than last year.
Duh! Doesn’t it cost more to deliver more. And don’t take credit for us doing so well then expect us to do it faster and cheaper. Doesn’t that lead to safety issues that you
always talk about. And, also at a time when our revenue is at its highest in years. Please don’t insult our intelligence!

So, our branch will continue to attack these very issues on the surface that they arise. We only ask that each member continue to help us help you. Our meetings are the 1st
Wednesday of each month (excluding July and August). Let’s encourage our CCA’s to attend these meeting even if you may not. They could benefit greatly just from being
in a room with so much knowledge and understanding about the contract, your rights, and responsibilities.

Our retirees have done their part. Now it’s up to the next generation to rise and take their place in this branch.

January 2017

New year, same post office?  Yes.  As much as we would all like to expound on all our great accomplishments like, delivering more parcels than we ever have, and working
endless hours to get it done, we still find ourselves having great success in spite of, rather than because of management in the Philadelphia District.  The results are
indisputable.  The company’s revenue is back up over $70 billion.  That should be applauded, right?

Unfortunately, CCA Workers are being run into the ground and lied to (as usual).  But this has caused an accelerated increase in accidents.  Oh, safety.  That’s the thing
preached about by management but often contradicted when it is time to show it.  Even a five minute safety talk is skipped over on busy days.  Either do it right or tell us you
don’t care.  But you do care when loss of man-hours and OWCP claims increase.  You see, that’s the thing.  They just can’t seem to get out of their own way.

But thank you all the great leaders that this great union has nurtured.  Our leadership has seemed to trump their bullyship.  And we will continue to fight the same fight that
has gone on for more then 100 years.  Thank you to all the members that are not scared of these fools who bury their souls when they become supervisors/204-bs.  Just
know, postal management, we will not feel sorry for you when you complain about your bosses.  Our complaints always fall on deaf ears to you.

We have this document that we both have agreed to.  It’s called the contract.  That’s all we require.

And work on your lying skills while you’re at it.  You’re bad at it.  Buy a backbone and work with us.  Talk to us, not at us.

December 2016

I had another story line for this article but could not avoid talking about one of the most historic elections in history. So, I wrote most of an article on November 8th. The only
thing is, I wrote it with the anticipation that the union backed candidate would win. Many unionist from our branch had worked very hard towards that end. So now, I’m
rewriting this article to share my views about the election in another light.

On the route today, many people displayed utter disbelief. While I empathized with them, I started receiving emails from union organizations. Their message was consistent.
It was one of moving forward and preparing for the “next fight”. We don’t get to relax, and kick our feet up. Now, we prepare like we did when President Regan began the
modern assault on unions when he opposed the air traffic controllers. Next came the Bush Jr. Administration that put the NALC through audits at the time of the election.
But we are battle tested. We endure and display resilience that is unmatched by any other union. We are there every day through not only the elements, but through
elections that we put our heart and soul into.

For the NALC, the choice was clear. We support those who have our best interest in mind. But now the healing must begin. The divisiveness is evident. And who touches
every household in America? Who has a unique relationship with every family in the country? So, we as unionists must lead the charge for what’s right, and that is just us
being our regular, inspiring selves.

With all the rhetoric bandied about during the election, the NALC has uniquely stood firm in advocating for what we think is right for our beloved membership.

November 2016

Know your sense of worth! Sometimes we look at every reason why our experience at the post office comes up short as employees. Do we have challenges that practically
no other employees in the country have? Hell yes! The term “postal stress” has become a part of the American lexicon. So, how we attack that stress, has many
components. But when things go haywire, often the thing to do is “reset”. In my opinion, that reset starts with our sense of self-worth.  As letter carriers, we should walk
around with our heads held high and our self-esteem soaring! We are the backbone and the #1 reason why our company has the highest likability (Q rating) of any
governmental agency. We have relationships with our customers that most companies would die for. Those very same relationships are exemplified in the customer
connect program. But more than that, we endure all that the elements AND postal management throw at us. So, the next time you walk into your office, carry yourself with
the confidence and pride of kings and queens. This “respect” is found in the Joint Statement On Violence and Behavior in The Workplace memo where it states (in part) “…
should be treated at all times with dignity, respect, and fairness”.  President Rolando informed the members that “workroom floor issues” are, (for the first time), being
negotiated as part of the contract. Let’s see if these well intended rules take root at our level any time soon. But it is always up to US to DEMAND our respect.  The Executive
Board would like to say that we are thankful for the opportunity to serve you, our proud, illustrious members. Please know that to us, our members are kings and queens.

Happy Thanksgiving brothers and sisters!  

October 2016

FAMILY! Universally, everyone knows what that means. And, every Union in the world is just that (one big family). We have the same purpose. Unfortunately, our family
recently lost two of our beloved members. Brothers Bob Dunn and Primo Mastrocola passed away. Bob Dunn was a past Shop Steward in Kennett Square. Primo
Mastrocola served this great Union up until his term as Financial Secretary ended this past January. He actually called me from the hospital, months before his death, to
make sure I received his work. Our blessings and condolences go out to the families of not only these brothers but all our fallen members.  What some people don’t
understand, is that most union officials only know one way. While no one is perfect, most of us only know to help our people. To argue, fuss, and fight for OUR PEOPLE. In
my opinion, it is rare to find a totally selfish union official. It’s not something you choose. We get it from management AND our members. The reality is, that just by being
there, we cause management to pause. We are often not called by our names. We are called “the Union”. It’s like we are supposed to take offense to that term. We wear our
righteous plight proud! It’s that same intent that right-winged politicians call people to the left, “liberals”.

I really would hope that we would all lean on one another to build on our knowledge base as it pertains to the contract. Our rights are our essence. Please take time to ask
questions to your union brethren. Together we have and always will move mountains. Standing alone, we are nothing!

So, while management will always do what they do, our secret weapon is UNITY and HUMILITY!

Stay focused, stay strong!

August / September 2016

Happy summer to the best workforce in the world. I don’t say this in jest. I fervently mean it!  Sometimes we tend to forget our self-worth. And we as carriers are the best of
the best. This is particularly important in light of how our company tends to exhibit bi-polar tendencies in how they deal with us. So, instead of focusing on them, I still say
we have to encourage each other.  Recently, our district management had some national training. That person was dumbfounded on how they did business. One point was
why they needed to have those bullying telecoms. But those very same abusive telecoms are being held daily. A recent point was made to “treat the CCAs with dignity and
respect”.   But in the next breath, the manager blasted one of the postmasters for speaking up for his carriers. Now, postmasters are told to “come down hard up to and
including removal” on carriers. They are ordered to walk at least two routes a week and do daily street observations. Is this not “unbalanced behavior”?  One thing they fail
to understand is that we have a great union. And we won’t back down!  Personally, I am tired of their threats, putdowns, and lack of empathy during the most trying times of
the year. Not only the heat, but primetime vacations present challenges to us all. But we endure and all we hear is their bitching. So, bring it on! It will only make us better at
avoiding you clowns in your air-conditioned vehicles. We don’t have a choice BUT to be out there. So, get up off your lazy butts and come see us or treat us as the MVPs of
this company that we are.

Letter carriers will always adapt and prosper. UNITY!

July 2016

Summertime! It’s usually the season of fun and sun. But in the PO, it’s another thing. Instead of us being lauded for the great job that we do, we are castigated as being lazy
cheats, etc.

The post office has an office downtown which monitors the carriers through the GPS in our scanners. After the scanner doesn’t move for about 50 minutes, an email is sent
to the postmaster. This program has been in effect for some time now. But NOW the heat has been turned up.  Many times, a carrier simply is doing a multi-point delivery, or
servicing a building that just takes time. Now, if they can implement this system, why would it not contain the portions of the routes that take more than 50 minutes to deliver
(according to DOIS)? Instead, they contact the postmasters (who sometimes don’t know their own office and actually interrogates the carrier or goes out to check on the
him/her). In a country with a jurisprudence system that defaults at “innocent before proven guilty”, the PO is completely opposite.   So, how is that not looking at us and
assuming that we are lazy cheats?  Okay, wintertime with snow, cold temperatures, etc. and there is no site of these people. Now, the weather gets warm and they come out
and remind us just what they think of us!  And when it’s extremely hot, They roll up on us in their air conditioned vehicles. A lot of times the carrier is trying to get his route
done earlier when the temperature is LESS hot.  So please be conscious of what these inconsiderate people are doing. How about bringing us out water, cold compresses,
etc.? Oh, I lost my small letter carrier mind for a second.

Please be safe!

June 2016

Last month our branch had the pleasure of attending the 2016 Pennsylvania State Association Congressional Breakfast. During a three-day period, our union lobbies our
Senators and Congressman for the rights of Letter Carriers. This process is one of the NALC’s most effective means of getting our message to the politicians that run this
country. Being in the lobbying sessions with the state officers and the business agent was very rewarding. It really shows how organized this great union is. These are
some of the things that the average member doesn’t see or hear about.  On the day before the breakfast, the NALC holds a rap session with the members that attend. This
meeting is held at the NALC national headquarters. There, President Rolando informs us of all the current information concerning our union and entertains any questions
that we may have. This year, the contract negotiations were thoroughly discussed. One very encouraging thing was that workroom floor issues were being addressed as a
part of the negotiations.  While that is promising,  I’ll wait with bated breath for the results. Intentions can be good, but we face some pretty scandalous stuff every day. The
heat is on again as management teams have been out checking on carriers during their street duties. They are checking to see how much mail carriers have left and if they
are done their routes early, etc. Please be careful! Vehicle accidents have drastically increased in the district. So, you know what that means. They always react to situations
with a heavy hand instead of solving the core issues. We all know that the company is treating the CCAs like horses. Realistically, this has to take a toll.

Stay strong and do is to not let these people take us off our square.

May 2016

Haven’t we all at some point looked at postal management and just wondered WTF motivated them to do what they do? But we do have an idea. So many are lazy people
who either got the job from nepotism or licking boots. It’s so easy to want to be a part of the “bullies”. The only thing is that path has many of them so stressed out that they
are racing to retirement. The problem is, they will never get any sympathy from us because they are the first ones to pass that stress right down to us.  But what really does
separate us unionists from postal management? Well… they are usually wrong. We are usually right. They are usually spineless. We take them on, the weather, the mail, and
the safety challenges. We do. They take credit. They present obstacles, and we hurdle them like the Olympians that we are at what we do!  One challenge we have is taking
each other for granted. This branch is full of talented people. President Massari has a long range plan to maximize and nurture this talent. But in the interim, she has pledged
to fight where needed and teach where wanted. If we can reach out to the next member, we will ensure that all the bad and incompetent managers know that we are here,
and we are not going anywhere!  More offices will be placed on the FSS machine soon. Rest assured that all your rights will be upheld during the implementation by Les
Dillman. He just happens to be one of the best route adjustment officials in the country. Oh, there you go, another great Branch 725 member.

A special kudo goes out to every retiree and CCA. We welcome you to our next meeting.

April 2016

The labor / management fight can't and won't ever end.  You see, the union is like an app on a computer.  It's always working in the background.  There are so many people
at every level working hard to garner, strengthen and / or increase your rights.  The biggest fight in recent years was the elimination of delivery days.  We had always been
told that this union would "fight to the death" on this issue.  Understand that this would be the ruination of the very company we seem to be more concerned at times than
our management counterparts.  Well, they seem to have given up that fight.  In fact, Sunday delivery has been added.  So, while management would arrogantly tell on the
floor "work harder or we will go out of business," all the unions officials were informed and steadied fact on "if you listen to this union's great ideas, we will be all right."  Our
parcel business has increased each year, so much to the point where parcel delivery is shaping up to be our saving grace.  It takes time and we do it better than anyone.  
The pride that you have in your job is reflected in those numbers.  And while the scanning may be a pain sometimes, it is essential in that very same success that you have
been doing.  Ironically, this comes at a good time because our contract negotiations have started.  And since the Rural Carriers' union has settled on a new contract with
yearly increases, this bodes well for us.  The bottom line is that all your hard work is not going for naught.  All the frustrations that your union officials endure is paying off.

But together, we can never stop our fight.

NALC Branch 725: "We always fight for you."

March 2016

Change is one of those things that most people fear.  But sometimes, change can be good.  It refreshes us and forces us to be better at what we do.  The new executive
board has hit the ground running.  President Massari has  instituted weekly drop-in training for the stewards.  This workshop-style training has started to pay dividends
already.  The training is currently focusing on real active grievances.  In the future, this training will get better and more inclusive.  After all, training is the cornerstone of the
Massari administration.  As the company responds to the needs of the customer, we have to change our altitudes as well.  All of this scanning and parcels only benefit us in
the end.  All these things take time,and we have to embrace that as our strength.  And, we have to exercise our rights.  It fact, it is my opinion that we demand that those very
rights be exercised daily.  And it is the goal of the new board to better communicate those very rights through each and every platform available (The Postal Record, nalc725.
org,etc.).  As our stewards get better trained, it is our responsibility as to express our concerns as union members.  And particularly, look out for the CCA's.  It appears that
some shady management officials write them up without them even knowing it is discipline.  And when the union finds out, it is too late.   We cannot have this happening to
our brethren!  We are not in this thing alone.

The next retirees' luncheon is April 14th at the Lamb Tavern in Springfield. Both retirees and active carriers are welcome.  Call the union office for details.

January 2016

As we move into the space of another year, we often contemplate what our plans are for the coming year. It’s an exciting time in both the company and our great branch. We
are officially off and running.  One thing we must all understand is that names and faces change. But the spirit of any unionist in this country remain the same. The thing we
all have in common is the opposition. The new management faces are changing as we speak. And they will have to be challenged by our new people just as we always
have. It’s all one big cycle of disrespect. We always have to earn our respect as working people.  Personally, I love the “fight”. Because when you know how hard our union
members work, and the things you have to put up with, it is an honor to do our part in combating such daily B.S.  Apparently, Sunday accidents are up. But the focus is
always reactionary as usual. Kind of like,” just fix it NOW”! That’s the management perspective. Now, the way I see it, our CCAs are overworked and under paid. But Sunday
delivery is in its infancy. So, any statistics are going to be relevant but maybe not appropriate. As we gain more market share in the parcel delivery business, those who
actually do the work are going to be what? PRESSURED is the word you all are thinking. Just maybe a direct pressure or implied pressure is one cause for more accidents.  
Until postal management matches the message of those nice commercials with the way they treat their greatest assets (us), there will always be a struggle.  But our struggle
never ends!

President Massari, thank you for all the great things you are about to do.

December  2015

Happy Holidays! As the New Year approaches, our great branch is undergoing a lot of transition. At the office level, some new Shop Stewards may change. The Executive
board has changed with retirement and the recent election.  President James McCullough has decided to step down and not run for another term. His over 40 years of
service will truly be missed. With him at the helm, we have endured great challenges in the PO (including FSS mechanization). He always handled the job with reverence and
was always just a phone call away. Primo Mastrocola decided not to run for another term. This young man has been serving this union for more than 50 years as an
Executive Board member etc.  While some outgoing Executive Board members won’t be back in their former capacity, they are still serving this historic branch in other
capacities and are essential to the future success of Branch 725.  Robert Zigmont and Karen McPoyle, we thank you for your dedicated service on the board for years.
The newly elected officers are; President Rhonda Massari, Vice-President Les Dillman, Recording Secretary Richard Murphy, Financial Secretary Mark Picarelli, Director of
Education Joseph Pease, Director of HBP/MBA Gerard Gallagher, Sgt.-At-Arms Thomas Mullin, Director of Retirees Eugene Dolan, and Trustees William Mellon, Margaret
Polite, and Barbara Kearney. We’d also like to acknowledge Congressional District liaison Andrew Kearney.  This new group of stewards, and Board members have been
groomed to not only continue the greatness of Branch 725 but to exceed it. It is only with the participation and support of the membership will we prosper together. We are
here to serve you (the membership). And starting January 1, 2016, I say “hands all in and let’s come out fighting”… For the rights of letter carriers that is!

November  2015

The gift and the curse: While many workers in the P.O. would think that the company is evolving with respect to technology, the truth is we have been and still are lagging
behind our competitors.  Recently, we have forged ahead with the scanning that will allow customers to know when to expect their packages will be delivered within an
hours time.  My office is one of the pilots.  I got an audible message from my scanner.  Upon retrieval, my scanner told me how far I was from said address and prompted me
for the scan.  Since this was a test, I answered the questions that were asked and continued on my merry way.  On this very day I had to call the P.O. to track an express
package.  The machine kept asking me if I wanted to sign up for the very service that had just been tested.  That's the gift.  It's a great service to the customers,  But, the
curse is that all of our competitors' workers are scrutinized through their scanners for every move they make that is not in line with designated times.  Our turn is coming,
Please do not feel at any time that you have to change the way you deliver your route.  These rules are set forth in the contract between the NALC and The USPS.  Any
information about how you do your job will be made know to you.  The universal rule is, "Accept orders from management as long as they are not unsafe or against the
law."  Then use the grievance process.  In thins month of Thanksgiving, this branch is thankful for you, the members we serve.  We vow to exceed all  your expectations of
us through hard work and determination.  Stay strong and united.

We thank you!

October  2015

My office was recently given a floor talk about where the scanning capabilities are going. We were volunteered to pilot a program where the customers can have more real-
time information at their disposal. One aspect will allow customers to know within an hour’s time, when their package will arrive. To do this our members will mark places in
their route which will be used to determine these times. While this is a great service to our customers, I want to assure you that nothing that management implements can
violate any of our rights under the contract. At no point should you run or work unsafely to meet any “standards” that management implies.  Our job is hard enough, but
please realize that your contract protects you in so many ways. Any questions should be forwarded to your Shop Steward. They will get you an answer.  Another situation
came to my attention when we viewed a training video. It spoke so proudly about the PO’s use of the current technology. The truth is that we have been behind our
competitors for many years as it relates to our technology. Even our new scanning system has been found to be faulty. And one of the things that bought that to light was
the overzealous discipline that management attempted?  The PO employed a “discipline all carriers for every scan missed” approach (only to find out the scans showed up
weeks later on occasion). The answer is that these scans were “lost” in the “cloud”. Hey postal management, get your s%$t straight BEFORE you accuse us!  But their
default position is “discipline the carriers”. Anything to meet the numbers right?  But no apologies.  Instead of “the customer is always right”.  How about “the carrier is
usually right”.

Stay strong and unified!

September  2015

The summer is almost officially over and let me commend you for enduring another summer of heat waves only to be overshadowed by the B.S. that management often to
rolls downhill to us. This is especially true for all the CCAs out there. Your brothers/sisters certainly empathize with your plight. Most of you have been severely overworked.
And when we say overworked, we mean 3 or more weeks without a day off. This is only exacerbated by the words that some of them describe our brethren as. We all know
that many supervisors on up often call us “bums” when we exercise our rights. These are the very rights that they don’t have the backbone to exercise on their own behalf.
And when things get “tough” for them, they go out on “stress”. But let a carrier take a day off after working 21 straight days and they want to discipline them (unjustly). And
to top it off, not allow union time for the Steward to defend this injustice. So, kudos to all of us for what we have to put up with. More than anything it’s just frustrating.
The scanning issue has reared its ugly head again as the “hot” issue. They really seem to think we can become automatons! We are human and come with all the frailties of
a human. Most of us take so much pride in what we do. But they are too dumb to understand it.  This branch fully understands the importance of scanning. It’s here to stay.
Not matter what we deliver from now on whether it be mail, parcels, water, or groceries, be rest assured that they will be scanned to validate our service. But the Union is
sworn to fight any and all discipline that is unjust.

August 2015

Summer is in full effect and so is the parcel business. We are steadily capturing more of the market from our competitors. And this is all due to the efforts of you guys! You
give us the tools and a system to excel, and our production will prosper. And therein lays the problem. Management always takes the easy way, and feels like they can just
discipline themselves out of any situation as a default position.  They constantly use PDIs as a disciplinary method as opposed to the investigatory process it’s supposed to
be. But a PDI really stresses out most of our membership. The job is hard enough as it is, but sometimes it’s just disrespectful. Only yesterday that same carrier was
exceptional.  The scanning issue has been driven home but (as usual) management never takes responsibility for their action and the “stuff” has to roll all the way downhill
to us. We all understand the importance of scanning parcels. Most of us do an exceptional job. But remember, we are not and never will be perfect!  The responsibility of
management is to at least get the parcels to us so that we can be judged on our own merits. Too often, the parcels are thrown to the wrong route. And yet, they only accuse
the person it was supposed to go to. So, please never take responsibility for something that may not be your fault. The burden of proof is on management to prove that you
did not scan that parcel. Until they sure up their processes with the clerks, get the f#$$% off our backs!  Lastly, please just realize your greatness. They can call us names,
and unjustly write us up, but the numbers don’t lie. You are the best at what you do!

July 2015

I have recently experienced a realization that pertains to the Postal Service. This example probably occurs all over the country. But let me share it with you and see if you
agree.  Recently, there was a temporary movement in the upper management structure. The POOM temporarily took on a detail to a higher position. His position as POOM
was filled by someone that we could work with. That coupled with another POOM that oversees offices in our branch presented an atmosphere for success. At this time, my
office OIC (who exhibited the behavior of a cave man and the intellect of a preschooler) was replaced with a permanent Postmaster hired by the new temporary POOM.
So now, for the period of about a month, President Jim McCullough was able to get so many things done with less resistance, less stress. The next thing I know, the old
POOM comes back and all the obstructions to success came back in an instant!  My realization is that there are actually some people in management who want to get things
done that benefit us all. But there will always be those idiots bent on being difficult and unreasonable for the sake of their own personal gratification.  Even the Postal
Managers at the highest level (in reality) turn their backs on HOW their numbers are reached to the default of THAT their numbers are reached.  So, my realization is that no
matter who is in these positions, our job remains the same. To expect them to be more humane and reasonable is not just hopeful, but also a little naive.
That is why the challenge that every Unionists faces is so difficult. And why every letter carrier does such a great job (not because of, but in spite of management).

June 2015

Thank you to everyone for another successful food drive. Although the amount of food donated has dropped in some places, it is still the #1 food drive in the country. Many
families will benefit from your selflessness.  The aforementioned is just another attribute that makes us special. If you see another letter carrier anywhere in the country,
without saying a word, you will understand each other. And when you actually talk, you discover that the same things happen all over this country. And that is usually a lack
of respect by postal management to its most valuable employees.  As we speak, the Postal Service has pilot programs for the delivery of water, groceries, and fresh fish. So,
you can see our future. But that future will entail more street time and functions that they can’t track. Simply put, if they want us to deliver, it’s going to take time. And since
that’s where all the new money is coming from, it would stand to reason that they would let us do the job without unrealistic time restraints.  I’m sure you got the floor talk
about us losing business from Amazon in some areas in the country. That is shameful! We should be gaining customers, not losing them. We just do it better than our
competition! But this “firing” was due to scanning. The companies have to have that information that the scans provide to the customers. We all get parcels delivered to us.
We love the emails that track the parcel. Well, that’s what’s at issue here. Please take the time necessary to do the great job that your tradition dictates.
But you and I both know that those carriers were probably rushed, and with that in mind, what corners are going to be cut?

May 2015

Unity and responsibility! These are words thrown around frequently in our conversations as unionists. But we have to examine it more closely.  Unity is an actionable that
derives from our label (Union)). We have common goals and interests. But the reality is we are all individuals within that realm. On a daily basis, we serve the customers on
our routes, etc. but the big fail is how we meld with regards to sticking together. The unity of our brothers/sisters led by the honorable Vince Sombrotto and displayed
during the great strike showed the way. But since then, we all see daily how we miss out on opportunities because we only look out for ourselves. We are not expecting you
to fight the great fight. We only aim to have you gradually learn more of your rights that will (in turn) empower you.  This brings us to responsibility. We understand the
reality that Postal Management will never live up to the responsibilities that they have contractually. To do that, as Unionists, would be very naïve. We operate under great
leadership and training. But what responsibility do we have to ourselves? The bottom line is that Postal Management only gives us what this great union demands,
pressures, and holds them to. You as an individual have to do the same. We shouldn’t be fearful if we are doing what we are supposed to be doing. That is the Power! Most
of you work your butts off every day and endure contractual inconsistency that you shouldn’t because of your work ethic and expectations that your employer will do the
right thing. The reality is that they only do what they are pressured to do with their contractual obligations. But let you miss a simple scan…
Stay strong!

April 2015

F’them (Postal management that is)! You see, it’s that time of the year when they really let us know how much they appreciate all our efforts. We just endured one of the
coldest winter months in history. The company is experiencing the most success it’s had in many years. But they are up to their normal shenanigans.  So, the start of my
thought process is to say F’ them. Forgive them that is. No joke, because their lack of logic, compassion, and good common business sense never changes. Or should I
say, they just grow the next batch that get dumb, dumber, and dumberer. We have to recognize who we are working for.  That’s why we are the strong ones. We endure the
physical challenges of the job. We deal with the customers complaint’s daily, and all this while seemingly having to battle with management every morning. But it will never
end so F’them!  The weather is better now, so they will be out and about. It’s gotten to the point where we should be happy to see them. Maybe then they will see us doing all
the things that make our customers appreciate us so much. Last month the customers could not believe we worked through that snow storm. They were so shocked.
Remember years ago when people said “one day we are going to be on the street for 7 hours”. Well, it’s here and it’s not so bad if you ask me. The problem is our members  
are not realizing the value of being on the street handling the mail. Scanning parcels is now our friend too. It takes so much more time to do our job the right way. So, that
has to be our approach.

And, as for management, F’them!

March 2015

The turnover of our membership is rapidly occurring. This brings new opportunities to inform as well educate. For all of you considering retirement, please rejoin the Branch
725 at a rate of $12.00 per year.  This will not only entitle you to continue to receive the Postal Record Magazine but also, allow you to attend our semi-annual luncheons if
you choose. The Postal Record costs about 78 cents to publish. The luncheons are free to retirees but cost the branch approximately $25.00. More importantly, this will
allow you to stay informed with respect to your rights as a retiree.  For our active members, please understand that Branch 725 is poised to serve your needs for years to
come. We must remember that we are never alone. The individual should rely on his/her Shop Steward for any questions or concerns. The Stewards rely on an unlimited
amount of resources to get the best service to the membership. However, sometimes we don’t lean on each other like we should. No one person knows all, but together we
form an incredible base of knowledge and understanding.  Branch President Jim McCullough has been a Union Official for about 900 years. There is almost nothing he
hasn’t experienced. But he can’t help what he doesn’t know. Lean on him.  Branch 725 member Les Dillman is the District lead for route evaluations. We are currently under
CDRAAP for those purposes. “Please be aware that your route is virtually being inspected daily by the times that you show. Protect your route and be professional at all
times”. Lean on him.  In my opinion, Postal Management will never change. But though unity, we can always get stronger.

Help us to help you. And please remember, there is no US without YOU!

January 2015

This time of year brings on thoughts of self reflection and new found hope. But in the Post office, it’s always like “what will they come up with next”? After last month’s
beautiful commercials welcoming all the new business and saying “it’s our season”. It’s almost like an alternate universe. Because we know the reality is that they were not
ready. The workforce was understaffed and overworked. No clerks to sort the mail and get the packages to us. Many offices (like mine) had not enough CCAs. By the time
we got a couple, the season was over. But they always know they can count on us to work crazy hours during the holiday season. Oh, and yes, all the news stories telling
people not to or what to tip us. Luckily, the public respects us enough to ignore the extraneous B.S.  After recently going through route adjustment, I took a big hit like many
of us do. But the bright side is I am back on the streets I had 5 years ago. Talking with one of the fathers of two kids I would see daily, I got what most of us get. His kids were
about 12 and 13 then. Now they are in high school. He told me that they felt secure with me being there daily when they came home. Wow! That’s the effect of carriers all
over the country. On a corner, I greeted my old customers “when I was last here, you had toddlers, now you are at the bus stop”. There is always a silver lining! The Post
office remains the same but we can see it differently.

Let’s remain unified!

The next retiree’s luncheon is on April 9, 2015 at the Lamb Tavern, Springfield, Pa.

December 2014

Thank You! For all you do each and every day. It would seem strange getting acknowledgement from your peer but that’s what I think we have do. From us it’s sincere. And
coming from postal management it always seems so empty.  Thank you for enduring one of the worst winter’s in history. We blink and now everyone is saying “after last
winter, we can’t complain about the heat”. (WTF) I don’t think so! It’s all we have (laughter and our inalienable right to complain as postal workers). But they walk by us in the
morning practicing their latest training, “Good morning”.  Only we can just feel the B.S. level because four routes are open with two callouts. Next comes the “thanks for
coming to work” statement as part of the daily service talk. Only to find out that written on their voice of the employee feedback form (posted by the time clock) is listed as an
action plan “we thank them for coming to work daily” oooooooooh! Thank you for not pointing that out (because you don’t have time to play games). Just give you a fair
schedule and you are on your way (right?).  If you read President Rolando’s articles monthly, you see that this same disrespect occurs at his level. So of course we know
where it’s coming from. For example, the parcel business is exploding for us and they are trying to shove them up our keester. Just give us the time and the business will go
through the roof! The thing is, this increase in business is because of the great job that you have been doing. It’s our future. So, thank you!
But when management asks me to volunteer for some fake committee, I simply say “no, but thank you”!

November 2014

You gotta believe! That was a battle cry echoed by Dave Cash of the 1970s Philadelphia Phillies.  But now I'm saying we have to believe in each other. Through the toughest
times, we have to remain unified.  And believe me, postal management is desperate.  The managerial staff in the district changes more then the outfits at a Beyonce Knowles
concert. For us, the purpose is simple: relax, learn the rules, apply them and make them earn their money.  We carriers are the MVP of the business model.  If they don't
realize it, then that is their problem.  Instead of a pat on the back, we get a knife in the back.  What have you done for me lately is not even the issue.  It's what you do for me
100 percent of the time.  So when a supervisor has something negative to say to you, wear it as a badge of honor.  Their plan of attack has been to threaten, attack, harass
and make our existence uncomfortable if we stray from perfection.  This is unsustainable and unrealistic.  However, the double standard is an issue that needs to be
examined. Postal management violates the contract daily.  They don't get penalized for it.  In fact, they are encouraged by results that are contrary to the upholding to the
contract.  They pay out monetary amounts because of negligent decisions daily.  Diligently, our union representatives work very hard on their routes and defend the
contract at the behest of postal management.  My hat is off to all the hard-working shop stewards.  I know your plight.  Now, we as the smart participants in this action must
decide what is best.  And that is to unite.  Come together, and let them manage us (while defending our rights).
Union discipline!

September / October 2014

It's that time of year again.  No, not football season.  It's "let's pounce on the misfortune of a few letter carriers" time - those carriers, however, who do not define the great
job we do  Fortunately, we see and talk to our customers daily.  They know and trust our presence.  But, then we have to get floor talks from our reactive management force.  
At some point they have to realize in illegally pressuring carriers to the point where they feel they have to dispose of the mail.  The Union representatives tell all the new and
experienced carriers their rights, but the hammer management carries seems to ring more true to some of our brethren.  But what's not emphasized is how embarrassed our
members are when these incidents occur.  We are many things.  Among them are very proud, prideful and hardworking people.  We have a keen sense of tradition that we
carry along with us along with the mail daily.  In July I attended the national convention with thousands of great leaders from all over the country.  During the convention, I
tweeted out "leadership = sacrifice + effort."   This message exemplifies every person who acts on behalf of the NALC.  We're all fortunate to be in this "family."  I know you
hear it too much daily by your supervisors, but thanks for enduring a long, pivot-filled summer on the back of a brutal winter.  Andrew Kearney has done a great job taking
over as branch .  Please go to nalc725.org for information about our branch and much more.  You can catch up o your smartphones as well.  Remember, together, we can
move mountains.

R-E-S-P-E-C-T.  Demand it!

August 2014

Thank You! For all you do each and every day. It would seem strange getting acknowledgement from your peer but that’s what I think we have do. From us it’s sincere. And
coming from postal management it always seems so empty.  Thank you for enduring one of the worst winter’s in history. We blink and now everyone is saying “after last
winter, we can’t complain about the heat”. (WTF) I don’t think so! It’s all we have (laughter and our inalienable right to complain as postal workers). But they walk by us in the
morning practicing their latest training, “Good morning”.  Only we can just feel the B.S. level because four routes are open with two callouts. Next comes the “thanks for
coming to work” statement as part of the daily service talk. Only to find out that written on their voice of the employee feedback form (posted by the time clock) is listed as an
action plan “we thank them for coming to work daily” oooooooooh! Thank you for not pointing that out (because you don’t have time to play games). Just give you a fair
schedule and you are on your way (right?).  If you read President Rolando’s articles monthly, you see that this same disrespect occurs at his level. So of course we know
where it’s coming from. For example, the parcel business is exploding for us and they are trying to shove them up our keester. Just give us the time and the business will go
through the roof! The thing is, this increase in business is because of the great job that you have been doing. It’s our future. So, thank you!  But when management asks me
to volunteer for some fake committee, I simply say “no, but thank you”!

JULY 2014

Summer's here! Along with this time of year come management's new and old to harass and poke us. One of the latest stupidities is an order for them to investigate any
deviations of 15 minutes or more from one scan point to the next. Absurd yes; surprising, no! Bull*1! Sorry, I just coughed.  This as everything they do to harm us, only
makes us stronger. We will adjust and get better at working around management's negative attacks on our domain on the street. After all, they where we are. We are the
backbone of this thing. But this is old news, right?  
Have you ever heard the adage? "Never argue with a fool, because someone watching won't be able to tell who the fool is and who is not?" My point is, it takes two to fight.
The more knowledge we gain, the more can can a stress-free work environment. Fight for our rights, and everything coming to us, yes. But fight with the "fools", no. They
are just not worth our time. Most of us are just sitting back and waiting for the next ridiculous thing.  Maybe we can laugh our way through this thing all the way to
retirement.  If you are reading this item, you are the well informed. You certainly care in a different way than others. The challenge is getting our message of rights and
responsibilities to the newer carriers.

Much respect to all the unionists out there. Your challenge and purpose has never been greater. But like mothers, you are to fix our boo-boos.

JUNE 2014

Remember the movie Ghostbusters? The tag line was “who you gonna call?” This always rings true with Postal management. Who you gonna blame? Why, the carriers of
course.  We still remain the most important limb to this beautiful tree, but are constantly treated like the mold eroding the tree bark. Soon they will be back out tracking us
like dogs with rabies again. They know where we are. They have our clock rings, our scan points, and monitors on the cell phones. When are they going to realize that
about 99 percent of us are doing what we are supposed to do? Is this process cost effective?  So, how insulting is it for you to then come to us and ask us to develop sales
for the customer connect program (timing?). What doesn’t connect is their attitude towards us. You think we don’t realize you rigging the DOIS numbers, still expecting us to
deliver the oversized parcels, scanning everything we see and remain the best delivery company out there is disrespectful?  What about us? While they will never change
their ways, we always have control of our destiny. They can wrongly complain about our performance. We can smile. They can give us unrealistic expectations; we can
relax and do our best.  At the end of the day, we go home to our families. And they, at some point, have to look at a mirror (knowing…).

We would like to thank all those who attended the retiree’s luncheon held biannually. It’s always a great time sharing company with those whose shoulders we stand on. We
would also like to welcome those members from the recently merged Chester branch who attended. Next time bring another member. The next retiree’s luncheon is
September 11, 2014. See you there!