10 April 2020
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April 9, 2020 Clerk Craft Vacancy Notice

The April 9, 2020 Clerk Craft Vacancy Notice has been posted on the Bid Postings page of this website.

Click Here to be taken to the page & notice.


7 April 2020
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Q&A: Families First Coronavirus Response Act

As provided under the legislation, the U.S. Department of Labor will be issuing implementing regulations. Additionally, as warranted, the Department will continue to provide compliance assistance to employers and employees on their responsibilities and rights under the FFCRA.

The following document has 79 questions and answers concerning the FFCRA for your information.


7 April 2020
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Federal Employee Rights – Paid Sick Leave and Expanded Family & Medical Leave FFCRA

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) requires that Federal government to provide all of its employees with paid sick leave and, for employees who are covered under Title I of the Family and Medical Leave (FMLA), with expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19. These provisions will apply from April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.

To read about specifics about eligibility, amounts, and qualifications, please click here to view the pdf document.


3 April 2020
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Families First Coronavirus Recovery Act

The Families First Coronavirus Recovery Act (FFCRA) extends to postal employees some additional leave benefits due to the Coronavirus and the illness it causes–COVID-19. APWU represented employees, both career and non-career, are entitled to the leave provisions enacted by the FFCRA.

Two new leave types are now extended to postal employees.

  • Up to 80 hours of Emergency Paid Sick Leave for specific qualifying reasons.
  • Public Health Emergency Leave, which amends the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), allowing employees to take up to 12 weeks of leave related to the closure of a minor child’s school or place of care due to COVID-19.

The law went into effect on April 1, 2020, and covers absences from that day forward. If you were off work prior to April 1st, you cannot retroactively claim benefits under the new law.  However, you can claim benefits for any qualifying absences from April 1 through December 31, 2020.

No matter your length of service or status as a career or non-career employee you are eligible for the Emergency Paid Sick Leave.  If you meet one of these qualifying reasons:

You will be paid up to 80 hours at your regular rate of pay up to a maximum of $511 per day (APWU represented employees do not go over this limit) if:

  1. You are subject to a Federal, State, or local quarantine or isolated order related to COVID-19 (state and local “shelter in place” or “stay at home” orders are not considered “quarantines”).
  2. You have been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine related to COVID-19.
  3. You are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and are seeking a medical diagnosis.

The following reasons allow you to receive ⅔ of your regular rate of pay, up to $200 per day, for the following qualifying reasons:

  1. You are caring for an individual subject to an order described in numbers 1 and 2 above.
  2. You are caring for your child under the age of 18 whose school or place of care is closed (or child care provider is unavailable) due to COVID-19 related reasons.
  3. You are experiencing any other substantially-similar condition specified by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

FMLA is expanded if the employee meets qualifying condition five (5) above. The following regulations apply:

  • An employee only needs 30 days of employment to qualify for expanded benefits.
  • The usual 12-weeks of FMLA is not expanded.
  • The first two weeks are not paid; but you can use Leave Without Pay (LWOP), sick or annual leave you have accrued to cover the two-week period. You may also use the 80 hours of Emergency Paid Sick Leave to cover the first two weeks; but if used here, it would not be able to use it for any other qualifying reason or combination of reasons.
  • The remaining 10-weeks of FMLA for the indicated qualifying reasons is paid leave – without charge to any contractual paid leave available to the employee; but it is paid at 2/3 the regular rate of pay with a cap of $200 per day and $12,000 for the ten weeks.
  • All of the regular FMLA rules and benefits remain unchanged when FMLA is taken for any reason other than qualifying reasons five above.

Employees who qualify and use these types of leave may not be removed, disciplined, or discriminated against for lawfully exercising their rights to the emergency paid sick leave or the expanded family and medical leave act.

The APWU reached agreement with the USPS that using this type of leave cannot be considered when a new employee is to be separated on during their 90-day probation (career employee) or first 120-calendar days of work or 90 days worked by PSEs. Anyone who believes this has happened should contact their local union stewards or officers.

Employees who wish to use this leave are obligated to give notice to management that they will be absent for one of the qualifying reasons and request Emergency Sick Leave or the Public Health Emergency Leave (expanded FMLA) benefits. You would request this leave through your normal leave request procedures by either calling the normal phone number or submitting a PS Form 3971 directly to your supervisor or manager.  On the form 3971 for type of leave you are requesting, check “other” and write in “Code 077-19” for reason 1-3. In the remarks section write “Emergency Sick Leave–Self”. For reasons 4-6 check the other box and write in “Code 081-19” and in the remarks section write “Emergency Sick Leave–Other.” If you call in and request this leave make sure you verify your PS 3971 upon your return before signing. You should also verify your pay stubs to ensure you received the proper type of leave.

As with all FMLA related absences you will be required to provide documentation consistent with Department of Labor regulations and the Act. Medical documentation for reasons 1-3 should not be given to your supervisor or manager but rather provided to your local medical unit or the FMLA coordinators department at the Human Resources Shared Service Center. Medical confidentiality policies and procedures still apply. For qualifying reasons 4-6 one of the following should be provided 1) a notice of closure from a state/county/city school system or your private school system; and/or 2) notice of closure from your daycare center; and/or 3) written statement from the employee stating the need for leave due to the school closure, daycare closure, or unavailability of the usual caregiver of the minor child should accompany the PS Form 3971.

We expect the Postal Service to be constantly updating the processes that will need to be put in place to implement this leave. We continue to have regular discussions with the Postal Service on these new provisions and when we receive updates additional developments we will provide them to you.

Click here to download PS Form 3971.


27 March 2020
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March 27, 2020 Clerk Craft Award Notice

The March 27, 2020 Clerk Craft Award Notice has been posted on the Bid Results page of this website.

Both Clerk Craft Posting Notice 220001 and Notice 209776 are available.

Click Here to be taken to the page & notice.


24 March 2020
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Revised Clerk Vacancy Notice

There is a second Revised Clerk Vacancy Notice on the Bid Postings Page.  Please refer to the 2nd notice under the March 10 Update.


22 March 2020
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Expanding Paid Leave & Dependent Care Leave

Excerpt from letter from Mark Dimondstein, President of American Postal Workers Union, AFL-CIO, along with referenced MOU documents:

Dear APWU Family,

Our first priority during the ongoing coronavirus outbreak has been ensuring the health and safety of our members and that of the public.

To that end, today the union signed two memoranda of understanding with the Postal Service temporarily expanding paid leave for PSEs and expanding the use of dependent care leave for postal employees with unexpected childcare needs as a result of the pandemic.

In solidarity,

Mark

Mark Dimondstein, President
American Postal Workers Union, AFL-CIO

Temporary Additional Paid Leave for PSEs

 

 

Temporary Expanded Sick Leave for Dependent Care

 

 

 


17 March 2020
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Postal Worker West Newsletter

We have added a special edition of the Postal Worker West Newsletter on the website.  It can be found under the menu item News >> Postal Worker West Newsletter, or click here to be taken to the newsletter.

Here is an excerpt:

BEING POSTAL IN A PANDEMIC

Since the March 1st reports of an infected postal worker at the Seattle NDC surfaced, the US Postal Service officials and Union officials have been proactive in dealing with the emergency that has engulfed most of the world.

USPS Hq officials responded quickly to the situation and in activating internal protocols. The same can not be said about all local management and work floor supervision. As in the past, directives emanating from Washington do not always filter down to or are acted upon by managers tasked with ensuring the nation’s mail is processed and delivered often hampered by short staffs. Safety is seldom first to the bosses.

“But now is not the time to point fingers, now is the time to partner and act as the postal family that has gotten us through so many other adverse times,” said Regional Coordinator Omar Gonzalez. “As Union Officials we tend to get frustrated and angered by the constant refusal of management to comply with the contract and their own safety and health rules on a daily basis,” he added.


12 March 2020
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APWU Meets with USPS on the Spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The coronavirus, officially named COVID-19, originating in China, has now spread to over 65 countries including the United States. The APWU is continuing to monitor the situation and is in constant contact with the USPS about COVID-19. The Postal Service informed the APWU on Feb. 29, 2020, that an employee tested positive for the virus.

Last week, the APWU initiated a meeting with USPS leadership to discuss their response to the virus. On March 2, APWU President Mark Dimondstein, Industrial Relations Director Vance Zimmerman, the Directors of the Maintenance, Motor Vehicle Service, and Clerk Crafts, and the officers assigned to Article 14 met with the Postal Service and representatives of the other postal unions to discuss the Postal Service’s response and plans and the unions’ concerns and suggestions.

For the full article, and ways to prevent the virus from spreading, please click here for the full PDF version.


12 March 2020
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We Have a New Contract!

Of course this is big news…

Click the link below for the full details:

https://apwu.org/news/new-union-contract