The Goal is in Sight - Fighting for better health and safety provisions in both RSMC and UPO bargaining (Our Health Our Safety)

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Monday January 16 2012
Volume 10 • Number 1 • January 2012

The Goal is in Sight - Fighting for better health and safety provisions in both RSMC and UPO bargaining (Our Health Our Safety)A historic round of Rural and Suburban Mail Carriers (RSMC) negotiations is about to begin. This is CUPW’s first time going into RSMC negotiations with the right to strike. While much progress has been made since January 1, 2004 when this current agreement took effect, CUPW’s eventual goal is equality with the urban operations (UPO) bargaining unit.

All three of the themes of this round of bargaining— fairness, respect, and progress—apply to our health and safety (H&S).

Every day, many RSMC brothers and sisters work side by side with UPO members, and are exposed to the same risks. Yet RSMCs do not have the same health and safety protections as the UPO bargaining unit. It is time we had equality and respect in the workplace.

 

Workload and Overwork

Overburdening, stress, and long hours are factors in many accidents and repetitive stress injuries (RSIs). A member can only manage the workload if she/he gets credit for all the work that she/he performs, and if the union can verify that the workload is properly and fairly distributed.

Changes in the volume of mail, and restructuring of routes are altering the workday for RSMC members. The current RSMC collective agreement does not enable the union to protect RSMCs from unreasonable workloads…