Privatize or Compromise

A guest blog by VOCAL RCA

House Oversight Committee Chairman, Darrell Issa, brought the Postal Service one step closer to complete privatization when his bill passed a committee vote on Wednesday, July 24th.

Issa’s postal reform bill, H.R. 2748, passed a full committee vote by a margin of 22-17. This allows Issa to present the bill to the House of Representatives. Congressman Issa has stated that he plans to present the bill by this September. The Postal Service has previously stated that by September 30th, the company will be bankrupt. Democrats have stated that they will kill the bill once it reaches the Senate. A compromise must be made by then. In Issa’s current bill there are proposals to, consolidate processing plants and closing post offices, increase employee health care costs, downgrade collective bargaining rights, reduce delivery days to five days and get rid of door to door delivery and replace it with cluster box units (CBU’s).

The plan introduced by Darrell Issa will destroy the Postal Service as we know it. A company void of collective bargaining will lower wages and strip benefits which will eradicate a decent livable wage. A bi-partisan agreement is needed and it probably will not happen. If a compromise is made, five day delivery will remain in play which will lead to thousands of rural carrier associates to lose their jobs. Congress is broken and the Postal Service will most likely get a quick fix to keep them afloat temporarily. September 30th is only 65 days away and Issa’s radical proposals are being met with harsh criticism from Postal unions and Democrats.

If the company does not privatize or compromise then the problem will be kicked down the road, as it has been for years. For now, the United States Postal Service struggles to survive another day while Congress dances around issues like the pre-funding requirement that put the company in this position. Privatize, compromise or do nothing…meanwhile 4,000 postal employees in the United Kingdom are set to strike on Monday, July 29th. Maybe a similar action in the United States will catch the attention of Congress to act now, responsibly!

Vocal RCA is a Rural Carrier Associate

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