PMG blames unions and mailers for USPS’ stalled progress

PMG blames unions and mailers for USPS' stalled progress in farewell speech Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe blames unions and mailers in farewell speech at National Press Club

In his farewell speech at the National Press Club today, outgoing Postmaster General Patrick R. Donahoe suggested that union and mailer groups’ “shortsightedness and myopia” have impeded efforts in Congress to modernize USPS. Donahoe also suggested that young people entering the workforce today really don’t want “generous health care and pension benefits.”

From the Washington Post:

“At some point in time, people have to start thinking about the future,” he said, not hiding his impatience with lawmakers and stakeholders who he said are too focused on their own self-interest. As for what the future of the mail will look like, it will not be “a person putting a piece of mail in a blue mailbox,” he said, but rather a far leaner organization, with a smaller workforce and less generous health care and pension benefits, that competes for e-commerce business, online advertising and other Internet-based services.
Our labor unions view the future of the organization mostly through the lens of preserving jobs and benefits as they currently exist. Technology is driving dramatic changes in delivery services – just look at how Amazon is offering one-hour delivery in New York City. The Postal Service needs the flexibility to be a part of those changes – and more importantly, to shape those changes.

He described business interests that use the mail, from banks and credit card companies to direct-mail advertisers, as excessively focused on limiting price increases –even as the lack of broad legislation from Congress puts more pressure on postal officials to raise mailing prices. And he accused unions of singlemindedly fighting to preserve jobs and benefits with too little flexibility.

“Most young people aren’t looking for a single employer over the course of their careers,” Donahoe said, describing a new generation of American postal workers that enjoys fewer benefits. “In today’s world, does it really make sense to offer the promise of a government pension to a 22-year-old who is just entering the workforce? And how reliable is that promise?”

via Postmaster general takes parting shot at unions, mailers – The Washington Post.

In PMG’s prepared speech to the National Press Club he wrote:

Just last year the American Postal Workers Union mounted a protest campaign and disrupted our partnership with Staples, which was a great business partner for the Postal Service. The Postal Service partnered with Staples to provide our customers with more convenient access to a wide range of our products and services in roughly 82 Staples stores. It was successful in terms of driving greater revenue for both partners.

Unfortunately, the APWU approach is to try to keep all of our transactions in Post Offices. That’s not convenient for our customers and it’s not a smart retail strategy for our business. We’d much prefer to be able to sell our products and services with a multitude of retail partners and be in popular locations to make it easier and more convenient for people to do business with us.

Unfortunately, the APWU approach is to try to keep all of our transactions in Post Offices.It’s an example of the arrow, near-sighted view winning over the broader, long-term strategy. Unfortunately, it’s now tougher for us to find retail partners.

New York Times: Postal Chief Says Congress and Unions Block Progress

Washington Post: Postmaster General Takes Parting Shot at Unions, Mailers

Washington Post: Postmaster General Hits Unions on His Way Out

USPS: Postmaster General Addresses National Press Club – Farewell Address Offers Perspective and Advice for Postal Stakeholders/Congress

USA Today: Holidays Deliver for Postal Service, But Losses Mount

UT San Diego: Departing Postmaster General Slams Banking Duties

Federal News Radio: Postmaster General: ‘Myopia’ from Congress, Unions Stifling USPS

Federal Times: Outgoing Postal Service Chief Renews Reform Fight



23 thoughts on “PMG blames unions and mailers for USPS’ stalled progress

  1. First, if you are so concerned about the postal service branching out why didn’t you use workforce already employed to staff at staples instead of paying out to them?
    Second, first you say save money by cutting to 5 day delivery, but then promote the package delivery for 7-days if carriers are already on the street then they should be able to deliver both, not to mention that if they are already out at night because of volume what will happen when they have three days worth of mail to deliver and on holidays that would be 4 days worth.
    Finally, if you would have just thought about the words you said about how much you have cut the amount of workforce since 07 you would have been pushing for congress to recalculate the amount of mandated funds with the current workforce and see that we have already paid out in full and should be able to move on with everything the way it was. Local mailers will still have next day delivery and plants don’t need to be closed. Then we can start to ask about the over payments to the retirement funds to help with the new trucks and LLVs.

  2. Have been in many post offices in my nearly 70 years. Few PO clerks would make a pimple on any of the clerks at the 3 Staples stores or the contract station at the hardware store. At the PO is seems there is a contest to see who can be the slowest arrogant ass in the entire system.

  3. HE is so wrong about the kids tht are 22 .. they definetly love to have carrer job(maybe not all) especially the ones that ant afford schooling, etc(nepotism) this has been agreat opportunity foer many of veterans also and myself , I couldnot afford school back then .. We need to keep the USPS. as akey Employee for the American kids, n veterans

  4. Donahoe’s rant just sounds like one more employee showing sour grapes after being shown the door. I personally still think he was forced into retirement after the whole hacking nightmare.

  5. What exactly is the prefunding retirement money for??? Donahoes said “In today’s world, does it really make sense to offer the promise of a government pension to a 22 year old just entering the workforce? And how reliable is that promise ?” It should be pretty damn reliable since the USPS is being forced to prefunding like no other company for people not even born yet??

  6. Donuthole is one sick man. Crimes against the USPS are many and need to be prosecuted. How does he get away with it?

  7. I started working as a PSE when I was 21 and I’m now 25 and a full time regular and the very first thing I was looking forward to was the TSP program and the benefits and having a job I can retire from…. So I don’t know what shortsighted 22 year olds he’s talking to but I don’t know anyone my age who would agree with what he’s saying

    • Congratulations on your conversion and agree with you 100 percent I have been a pse since 2011. Continue to take full advantage of your benefits.

  8. I don’t agree with everything the PM says but he is right when it comes to the unions- they don’t care about the state of the PO or about their members- it’s all about how much $ can we get from their members. listen to the union leaders speak sometime. they are well schooled in what to say and how to present it. if the NALC were working for its members then why was the 1st COLA delayed? why then did they consider the CCA position a “win” for us? we will get the standard 1% or so raise on each contract just as we have done for the last several contracts. the NALC allows us to operate unsafe LLV’s with no air conditioning in the summer and some have very little heat in the winter. with decent vehicles and forcing everyone to have curbside boxes the carriers wouldn’t have so many health issues but again that would mess with the number of bodies in the NALC so they will never agree to it. and I’m supposed to be convinced the NALC is working for it’s members?? yeah- throw some $ at COLPE bothers and sisters and together we will be strong- bla bla bla

  9. The problem with the Post Office is that it is trying to be all things to all people instead of just concentrating on delivering the mail and selling stamps. So much money is wasted on marketing, advertising, and partnerships with Hallmark and American Express. Now they even want to go into banking. They want to be a jack of all trades and a master at none. UPS and Fed Ex just focus on moving their product. They have the supplies handy that a customer needs to mail their package, and the software for labeling their packages, and the ability to track it. That’s all the customers care about, just getting their packages from point A to point B in a timely manner without damage.

    If we spent less space in our retail units on Hallmark cards, decorative packaging and other fluff products, we could use that space for what customers really want, packaging peanuts, labeling devices, and address checking software. If they really wanted to cut down on personnel, that would do it because customers wouldn’t be taking up so much time at the counter with unprepared packages and bad addresses.

    There should be a clerk available to sell the customers the packaging supplies they need before mailing so there wouldn’t be so much pilferage and waste, or the clerk could already have the packaging supplies and package their items so that the customer won’t be walking out of the door with the supplies.

    I never understood why the Post Office would have all these rules and regulations that they expect their window clerks to know, and then allow people to be trained at a McDonald’s level to handle their mail at a Contract Postal Unit. Postal Management has lost sight of what a Post Office is really for. I would expect that soon they will be partnering with Starbucks to keep customers happy during their wait time in line for having one clerk at the window and for those ridiculously long receipts that customers are always complaining about.

  10. Obviously PMG Donohoe has no clue…it’s called the United States Postal SERVICE! Over his short period of time in office we have reduced service, closed may processing facilities, and closed post offices or reduced hours of operations in many areas. If his goal was to dismantle the postal service…then he’s done an excellent job! He has lied to the American public and Congress about the financial stability of the USPS…we have an operating profit! He has lied about the changes in the service standards and plant closures. Bottom line is it’s about SERVICE…the USPS is much better off without Donohoe as PMG!

  11. Those here in the APWU should be proud.

    Anytime the criminal in the PMG position calls out your union/leader, that means that union/leader is doing a good job for the union members.

  12. He’s right, everything is the fault of other people, not the incompetent bozo at the top. Certainly not the fault of the incompetent and unqualified sycophants populating the rest of management. It must be the fault of the people actually doing the work, and of course, our customers!

  13. PMG Donahoe must have forgot about his health care package that he receives for free. He also forgot to mention how he receives a bonus and defered compensation on top of his salary every year. In Jack Potter’s last year Mr. Donahoe made over $500,000 with his bonus and defered compensation. Not bad in a company that is saying that they are losing money and can’t afford to pay for the employees on the front line. He is going to retire with over 4 million is his pension account. I wander if he is going to accept a change to his health care plan. Look up the executive compensation and salaries. It will make you sick! The younger generation does not understand that health benefits and pension plans are the most important part of every job. Health care is the biggest expense for all Americans in this country. Think about the out of pocket expense for a catastophic illness like cancer. I had to pay $6000 out of pocket with a good health care plan. What do you think the cost would be with a bad less expensive plan? Mr. Donahoe cares for nobody but himself. You know how you can tell when he is lying? When he opens his mouth!

  14. The problem is not putting our services in retail partners to make them more convienent for our customers. The problem is not using fully trained USPS clerks in those stores to maintain the sanctity of the mail. The union would love to have a bunch more clerk jobs in these reail partner stores, but DonaHOE wants to use very low wage, part time store clerks hired yesterday to run the mail counter. I have seen a Post Office staffed with postal employees in a small town hardware store. If it can be done there, why not in Staples????????? DonaHOE is not seeking customer access, he is seeking replacement clerks.

  15. Now we get his philosophy from his own fat mouth. Donahoe tries to turn the tables and suggests, wrongly and stupidly that workers don’t want pensions and benefits. What kind of bullshit is that? And what kind of pension and benefits will you get, Fat Ass? You have no fucking clue to what anybody wants except for yourself, you selfish arrogant jerk.
    Maybe people don’t expect long term employment because the opportunity is being taken away as fast as possible by employers who hate unions and would have everything run by robots if they could. Have you thought of that? Of course you have, Donahoe because you are one of those Republican middle class hate mongers who wants to destroy us. Your words are lies, all of them.
    You are a sorry excuse for PMG or any postal employee, right down to a janitor. You deserve an indictment and trial for your allowing the identity theft of us employees, along with a conviction. Good riddance and stay away forever.

  16. He Donuthole, if we’re so broke, why:

    – is the mgmt bonus program still intact ?

    – why haven’t you shut down your staff’s private gym/health club, paid for by the USPS ?

    – why do you still have TWO limousines with two chauffeurs on the payroll ?

  17. Donahoe’ lips are moving he is lying or at the least distorting the truth. We already sell our products at multiple retail locations. Now for his big lie, young people don’t want good benefits and pay? Do you asked them if they want $20.00 and hour and they no give me $10.00? All people want good salaries and benefits so they can raise their families. He is right about 1 thing most people coming into the post office today probably won’t make it a career because of the mistreatment the workers get by the culture of harassment created by upper management,

Comments are closed.