Tampa Letter Carrier by jennyyingdi


									                                             Tampa Letter Carrier
                                                           Volume 5 - Issue 4

A.R. “Tony” Huerta NALC Branch 599                             Tampa, Florida                                      April 2006

President’s Report                                                                                            by Jim Good
                                                                                                       President - Branch 599
Protecting Your Rights                       your supervisor immediately when you       These initial proce-
                                             are involved in any type of accident,      dures are extremely
    Under OWCP                               whether it is a vehicle accident or an     important. I have re-
                                             industrial accident. Then you must fill    cently been involved

I    have recently become involved in a
    number of cases representing
Branch 599 letter carriers who have
                                             out a Form CA-1, Notice of Traumatic
                                             Injury. Your supervisor should give
                                             you this form to complete; if not then
                                                                                        in cases where proper
                                                                                        paperwork was not
                                                                                        filled out in a timely
been injured on the job and are having       you must ask for it. After completion      manner and, as a re-
difficulties dealing with the Office of      make sure that your supervisor gives       sult, the carrier for-
Workers’ Compensation Program                you a receipt of filing that will show     feited his right to COP. When this hap-
(OWCP). One of my duties as branch           the date and location where the injury     pens the carrier may still qualify for
president is to assist and represent         occurred, as well as the date the form     compensation for lost work hours and
branch members in the filing and ap-         was filed. Although the employee has       paid medical bills, but may have to
pealing, if necessary, of the proper         up to three years to file this form, it    wait four to six weeks or longer to re-
forms to ensure your rights designated       should be filed immediately to ensure      ceive that compensation.
by OWCP. These rights are granted and        that you will receive Continuation of
protected under the Federal Employee         Pay(COP). The USPS will continue to        Do not trust your supervisor to in-
Compensation Act (FECA). In order            pay the wages of an injured employee       form you of your rights and respon-
for you to be protected, however, you        for up to 45 calendar days provided        sibilities. If you have any questions
must follow certain procedures, rules        medical evidence is submitted within       or concerns when you are injured on
and time limits.                             ten days of the filing of the CA-1.        the job, ask your shop steward or
                                                                                        call the union hall for advice. It is
I know that I have written regarding         When you are injured on-the-job you        always better to play it safe and see a
this issue many times before but please      have the right to go to the doctor of      doctor or the emergency room imme-
take a minute to review the facts again      your choice for treatment. If you can      diately if you are injured.
because your supervisor is probably not      not be seen by your doctor immedi-
going to give you the correct and com-       ately, you may go to a hospital emer-      I have also received phone calls from
plete information should you need it.        gency room for initial treatment, and      carriers who are reluctant to submit
                                             then go to your choice of physicians for   medical documentation for sick leave
When you are injured on the job there                                                   or work restrictions to their supervi-
                                             further treatment. Prior to going to ei-
are a number of things that you need to                                                 sors. You do not have to submit any
                                             ther the emergency room or the doctor
do to ensure that you will receive the                                                  medical documentation to your super-
                                             of your choice you will be given a
care and compensation that you are                                                      visor. Medical documentation for sick
                                             Form CA-16 signed by your supervi-
entitled to under the Office of Workers’                                                leave should be submitted to the Medi-
                                             sor. This form authorizes medical treat-
Compensation Program for Federal                                                        cal Unit, USPS, P.O. Box 39451,
                                             ment for a period of 60 days. Manage-
Employees. If you fail to do these                                                      Tampa, FL 33630-9451. Medical docu-
                                             ment must give you this form if you
things properly, or within the pro-                                                     mentation for OWCP cases involving
                                             file a CA-1 within seven days of the
scribed time limits, you may forfeit                                                    on the job injuries or industrial acci-
                                             injury. Once you choose a physician,
some of these entitlements.                  however, you must remain under his         dents should be submitted to Injury
                                             care unless referred by him to another     Compensation, P. O. Box 39443,
First, it is your responsibility to notify
                                             doctor, or you must get approval from      Tampa, FL 33630. FMLA documenta-
           INSIDE THIS ISSUE                 OWCP to switch doctors. If you file a      tion should be submitted to the FMLA
                                             claim for traumatic injury and the claim   coordinator at the USPS, 5201 Spruce
EX. VICE-PRESIDENT’S REPORT...…..3           is subsequently denied, any COP that                 (continued on page 4)
UNIONISM……………………..………….5                     has been paid to you must be paid back
                                             in the form of sick leave, annual leave,          Branch Meeting
POINT OF PERSONAL PRIVILEGE…..6              or money.                                       April 6, 2006 - 7:30 PM
 Page 2                                                                Tampa Letter Carrier                                                             April 2006

                           Branch 599 Officers                                                                      Branch 599 Shop Stewards

PRESIDENT                          Jim Good               (813) 960-3759, cell 417-8877           Brandon                   33510    Terry Franklin      (813) 657-9690

EXECUTIVE VICE-PRESIDENT           Detlev Aeppel          (813) 907-9685, cell 505-7914           Brandon                   33511    Phil Chirico        (813) 657-3180
                                                                                                  Carrollwood               33618    Gilbert Cabanas     (813) 855-0516
VICE-PRESIDENT                     Gilbert Cabanas        (813) 855-0516, cell 597-7396
                                                                                                  Commerce                  33602    Dook Ramotar Sr.    (813) 780-6254
RECORDING SECRETARY                Cheryl Clothier        (727) 385-7337                          Forest Hills              33612    Warren Sumlin       (813) 486-7612

FINANCIAL SECRETARY                Tony Diaz              (813) 598-9635                          Forest Hills Annex        33613    David Camuy         (813) 892-6553
                                                                                                  Hilldale                  33614    Gilbert Cabanas     (813) 855-0516
TREASURER                          Michael Anderson       (813) 681-5688
                                                                                                  Hilldale Annex            33634    Lance Jones         (813) 220-1292
TRUSTEE(Chairman)                  Henry Dupree           (813) 621-6471
                                                                                                  Hyde Park                 33606    George McEndree     (813) 935-0244
TRUSTEE                            Jose Oliva             (813) 873-2747                          Interbay                  33611    Dean Minter         (813) 767-6538

TRUSTEE                            Terry Franklin         (813) 657-9690                          Interbay                  33629    Jim Knotz           (813) 832-6644
                                                                                                  MacDill                   33608    Jim Knotz           (813) 832-6644
SERGEANT-AT-ARMS                   J.C. Howard            (813) 621-1976
                                                                                                  Palm River                33619    J.C. Howard         (813) 621-1976
MBA / NSBA                         Albert Guice           (813) 621-7931
                                                                                                  Plant City                33565    Misty Bauer         (813) 681-6890
HEALTH BENEFITS                    Lance Jones            (813) 220-1292                          Port Tampa                33616    Dean Minter         (813) 767-6538

DIRECTOR OF RETIREES               Jack Newman            (813) 805-2942                          Produce                   33610    Eric Fleming        (813) 310-8274
                                                                                                  Ruskin / Sun City Center 33570     Jack Hencoski       (813) 633-5422
LABOR - MANAGEMENT                 Eric Fleming           (813) 310-8274
                                                                                                  Seminole Heights          33603    Tony Diaz           (813) 872-1542
LABOR - MANAGEMENT                 Brian Obst             (727) 507-0135
                                                                                                  Sulphur Springs           33604    Matt Kokich         (813) 431-3686
MAPS COORDINATOR                   Chris Albrecht         (727) 791-7162                          Tampa Carrier Annex       33607    Ken Lee             (940) 368-4771
                                                                                                  Tampa Carrier Annex       33609    Brian Obst          (727) 458-0679
                                                                                                  Temple Terrace            33617    Detlev Aeppel       (813) 505-7914

                              Presidents Emeritus                                                 Town & Country            33615    Brian Obst          (727) 458-0679
                                                                                                  Ybor City                 33605    Detlev Aeppel       (813) 505-7914
                      Michael Anderson          Orbe Andux

                      James Butler              Don Thomas
                                                                                                                         RETIREES BREAKFAST
                       Garland Tickle           Lenin Perez
                                                                                                                              (In Tampa)

                                                                                                                        First Monday of Every Month

                                                                                                                                9:00 AM at
                     A.R. “Tony” Huerta NALC Branch 599                                                                       The Coffee Cup

                                 3003 W. Cypress St.                                                                           4407 N. Hubert

                                                                                                                               in Drew Park
                            Tampa, Florida 33609-1617

                  Tel: (813) 875-0599                Fax: (813) 870-0599                                                 RETIREES BREAKFAST
                                                                                                                              (In Brandon)
                            email: nalc599@verizon.net
                                                                                                                       Second Tuesday of Every month
                        website: http://www.nalc599.com
                                                                                                                                8:00 AM at
  The National Association of Letter Carriers Branch 599, 3003 W. Cypress Street, Tampa,
  Fl 33609-1617, publishes The Tampa Letter Carrier monthly. The opinions expressed in                                        Buddy Freddy’s
  this publication are those of the writers, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of
                                                                                                                           134 Gornto Lake Rd S.
  Branch 599. It is the policy of this publication that all articles submitted for publication
  must be signed by the writer. All articles are subject to editing and revision at the discre-
                                                                                                                                in Brandon
  tion of the publisher & editor. Please submit articles to the branch office no later than the
  tenth of the month. Submit articles as .txt, .doc or .wpd documents attached to email sent
  to: newsletter@nalc599.com
                                     Jim Good - Publisher
                                        Kit Kelley - Editor
April 2006                                        Tampa Letter Carrier                                                Page 3
Executive Vice-President’s Report                                                                      by Detlev Aeppel
                                                                                          Executive Vice-President - Branch 599
          COLA’s -
        A Real Benefit                       Congress is currently considering      likely attacks will
                                             bipartisan legislation (S.2201/        be on our COLA’s

I    n March it was announced that
     letter carriers would be receiving a
23 cent per hour COLA increase. This
                                             H.R.4755) to restore good faith bar-
                                             gaining and maintain safety in the
                                                                                    and our health
                                                                                    benefits. But you
                                             air.                                   can help. If you
will amount to an additional $18.40                                                 know of, or are
per pay period or $478.00 per year.          The situation is even worse in the
                                                                                    buddies with, a letter carrier that is
This is the seventh of eight COLA in-        private sector. A recent report is-
                                                                                    currently not in the union then in-
creases for the current 2001-2006 Na-        sued by the AFL/CIO reveals that
                                                                                    vite them to join now. Explain to
tional Agreement. This brings the pay        Wal-Mart not only fails to pay de-
                                                                                    them what is at stake for all letter
for top rate carriers (grade1 stepO) to      cent wages but Wal-Mart is also
                                                                                    carriers. Next become an e-
$48,428.00 per year. This represents         refusing to provide affordable
                                                                                    activist. Finally sign up for auto-
an increase of $5,793.00 since 2001 or       health insurance. It must be re-
                                                                                    matic COLCPE contributions.
$222.81 per pay period. Since 2001           membered that Wal-Mart is the na-
                                                                                    Let’s stop talking solidarity and
COLA’s have provided roughly 50%             tion’s largest employer. The com-
                                                                                    start demonstrating solidarity.
of our pay increase. This pay increase       pany has squeezed at least $1 bil-
will take effect on March 18 and will        lion in economic development as-
be reflected in the checks for the April     sistance from state and local busi-
                                                                                    In Solidarity...
7 pay date. These COLA’s are just one        nesses in the last 20 years. In 2005
of the real benefits our contract pro-       there were 1.39 million workers
vides for letter carriers.                   employed be Wal-Mart. This
                                             means that state taxpayers (that’s
Most private sector workers and many         you) are paying million and mil-
Federal workers do not receive sched-        lions of dollars to provide health
uled COLA increases. In fact the pic-        care to Wal-Mart employees. The
ture is pretty grim for many workers.        state of Maryland has already en-
Take the case of air traffic controllers.    acted the Fair Share Health Act
Air traffic controllers keep the airways     which makes sure that large profit-
safe for millions of travelers every         able companies such as Wal-Mart
year. For years there has been a grow-       pay their fair share of the cost to
ing shortage of air traffic controllers.     cover their own employees health
Today there are 1,000 fewer control-         care cost. Over 30 other states are
lers than two years ago. Now the             following suit.
Bush Administration wants to impose
a contract on air traffic controllers that   Our current contract will expire on
would cut their pay by 20%. This will        November 20, 2006. In August ne-
create the situation where one in four       gotiations will begin on our next
controllers will be better off retiring      contract. Given the current anti-
than continuing working. More than           union climate in Washington, these
4000 controllers could retire immedi-        will be tough negotiations and the
ately. This would create a staffing cri-     NALC will have to fight hard to old
sis in which fewer and fewer control-        the line against give backs and at-
lers are guiding more and more planes.       tacks on our benefits. The most
Page 4                                           Tampa Letter Carrier                                        April 2006
President’s Report (from page 1)                                                April Meetings:

St., Tampa, FL 33630.                                        Tues 4-4-06 - Shop Stewards Meeting
                                                                            Union Hall, 7:00 PM
If you follow these procedures from the date of your in-
jury it will make the entire process of dealing with OWCP    Thur 4-6-06 - Branch Meeting
go much more smoothly and ensure that you are covered                      Union Hall, 7:30 PM
for any future medical bills that may arise resulting from
                                                             Tues 4-25-06 - TLC Board Of Directors Meeting
your approved case.
                                                                            Union Hall, 7:00 PM

                                                             Thur 4-27-06 - Executive Board Meeting
                                                                            Union Hall, 7:00 PM

                                             President’s Station Visits
                    Forest Hills 33612                                      Wednesday, March 29th
                Forest Hills Annex 33613                                       Friday, March 31st
                        Hilldale 33614                                        Wednesday, April 5th
                  Town & Country 33615                                        Thursday, April 13th
              Temple Terrace Annex 33617                                        Friday, April 14th
                    Carrollwood 33618                                        Wednesday, April 19th
                 Palm River Annex 33619                                         Friday, April 21st
                   Hilldale Annex 33634                                      Wednesday, April 26th
                  Sun City Center 33570                                         Friday, April 28th
                     Plant City 33564                                         Wednesday, May 3rd
                      Brandon 33510                                          Wednesday, May 10th
                      Brandon 33511                                           Thursday, May 11th

                        ARSLAN UNIFORMS
                                  Bill & Shirley Moran
                             grubsreteP .tS 7741 hcnarB reirraC retteL deriteR
                                  apmaT 995 hcnarB rebmeM yraronoH
                         NEED UNIFORMS IN A HURRY?

                          SHOP BY PHONE FROM HOME
                                  320 PATLIN CIRCLE EAST        PHONE: 727-584-4307

                         LARGO, FL 33770-3063 CELL: 727-543-0705         FAX: 727-585-9367
April 2006                                          Tampa Letter Carrier                                                       Page 5
Unionism                                                                                                            by Brian Obst
                                                                                                              Chief Steward - Branch 599
 Scheduled Day Off and
                                             fore or after then your SDO is protected       The information for
  Holiday Scheduling                         and you may not be forced to work              this article has been
                                             overtime on your SDO. The second               taken from the New
A      rticle 8 of the National Agreement
       covers hours of work and goes into
great detail on many work related issues
                                             part of the provision states that it is not
                                             for use to circumvent the scheduling
                                                                                            2005 edition of the
                                                                                            Joint Contract Ad-
                                             provisions of Article 8 meaning that           ministration Man-
dealing with work hours. Overtime is-
                                             one may not schedule for 1 hour of an-         ual, which is the
sues are discussed at length and all car-
                                             nual leave to protect one’s SDO.               agreed upon inter-
riers and especially stewards should
                                                                                            pretation of the National Agreement
familiarize themselves with all the dif-
                                             Let’s move on to the Designated Holi-          for both postal management and the
ferent provisions in this article.           day as this seems to be an area where          National Association of Letter Carriers
This month I would like to address           many are unsure of the rules. If your          and is the grievance bible for all stew-
scheduled days off (SDO) and holiday         SDO falls on an observed Holiday (IE.          ards and union officers. If you have
scheduling when in conjunction with          Labor Day Monday for example) you              any questions on this topic or any other
annual leave. There have been a great        Designated Holiday would be moved to           issue confronting you, please seek out
many questions on this issue lately and I    Saturday before. Seeing that this will         your steward of contact your branch
would like to clarify the proper ways to     provide you with a long weekend (Sat,          officers through the Branch 599 offices
protect your SDO and holiday for all         Sun + Mon) you wish to protect this            at (813) 875-0599.
carriers.                                    time off. The only way to do this is to
                                             have annual leave on both the Friday           Remember, knowledge is the key.
Starting with your SDO. The Jcam             before as well as the Tuesday after.
                                                                                            In brotherhood,
2005 edition states on page 8-12, under      Remember that Monday in this exam-
Overtime and Annual Leave,                   ple is actually your SDO and Saturday          Brian Obst
“Normally, Employees, including Em-          is actually your holiday so if you only        Shop Steward - Town and Country
ployees on the Overtime Desired List,        have annual leave on one side or the
who have scheduled annual leave, in-         other of the weekend you would be
cluding incidental annual leave, imme-       protecting your SDO which you al-                        Health and Welfare
diately preceding and/or following non       ready have off due to it falling on the
scheduled days will not be required to       holiday. Protection of a designated           Father of David Richie, Forest Hills Ax car-
work overtime on the non scheduled           holiday is not addressed in this article      rier, passed away.
days. The intent of the parties is to al-    so the only way to protect the desig-
                                                                                           Dean Minter, recovering from knee surgery
low employees to make advance plans          nated holiday is to have annual leave
for non scheduled days. It is not the        on both sides of it so that you are actu-     The brother of Dee Brockman, Interbay
intent of the parties to create a means to   ally on annual leave for the entire pe-       passed away.
circumvent the scheduling provisions of      riod. Since it is your designated holi-
Article 8.” Simply put this provision        day you will not be charged annual for        John R. Brown, retiree, passed away.
states that if you have annual leave in      the day but you will have protected
conjunction with your SDO, either be-        your long weekend.                            Plant City Carrier,Ray Chesser’s step-
                                                                                           grandson passed away.
Page 6
Page 6                                              Tampa Letter Carrier
                                                   Tampa Letter Carrier                                              April
                                                                                                               April 2006 2006
A Point of Personal Privilege                                                                         by Leslie Ray Garcia

         Nothing                            municator, cut and ran by withdrawing      bin Laden to the U.S.
                                            all military personnel from Beirut         government. What was
       But The Facts                        without any military response to the       left out by the news me-
                                            Marine murders. To prove his strength      dia was that the Suda-
O     n many occasions the media have
      insinuated that former President
Bill Clinton was the primary reason for
                                            on terror, the island of Granada was
                                            attacked instead. Another fact that the
                                                                                       nese only offered to ar-
                                                                                       rest Osama and place
                                            spin-masters fail to address is the pol-   him in Saudi custody.
the existence of al Qaeda, Osama bin
                                            icy of Reagan to encourage allies in the   The Saudi authorities in
Laden and Saddam Hussein because of
                                            Gulf (Saudi Arabia) to finance Saddam      Riyadh adamantly refused to take bin
his “weakness” on terrorism. Yet most
                                            Hussein’s war against Iran while           Laden into custody but the “liberal me-
of the spin-masters continually fail to
                                            American and Israel shipped weapons        dia” neglected to inform the U.S. public
explain how Osama bin Laden and
                                            to Iran. This led to thousands of deaths   of this fact. Clinton critics dismissed any
Saddam Hussein became leaders, what
                                            and horrific atrocities while the Reagan   of his efforts to kill bin Laden as firing
countries funded them, what admini-
                                            administration pretended to seek peace     missiles at an empty tent, even though
stration supported them and who
                                            agreements between Iraq and Iran.          there was a signed National Security De-
trained the terrorists.                                                                cision Directive that authorized an inten-
                                            The regional policy tilted sharply to-     sive campaign to destroy al-Qaeda and
Clear historical evidence starts with the
                                            ward the support of Saddam Hussein in      seize or assassinate Osama. Republicans
Republican administration of President
                                            Baghdad when George H. W. Bush             denounced this as an attempt by Clinton
Ronald Reagan and the support of the
                                            became President. It seems that the        to deflect the Lewinsky scandal (or “wag
arms deal with Iranian sponsors of
                                            Central Intelligence Agency under the      the dog” as they called it.) Continual po-
Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad which
                                            administration of President Bush I         litical media attacks occurred even though
later became known as the Iran-Contra
                                            (former head of the CIA) gave billions     Clinton ordered the CIA and the National
scandal. This scandal involved the sell-
                                            of dollars in aid to the Afghan muja-      Security Council to institute a special al-
ing of high-tech missiles to the theo-
                                            hadeen. The leader of the “freedom         Qaeda unit that thwarted schemes to blow
cratic dictatorship ruling Iran in ex-
                                            fighters” against the Russian military     up the L. A. International Airport , the
change for Iran’s assistance in obtain-
                                            invaders of Afghanistan, trained by the    Holland and Lincoln tunnels, the neo-con-
ing the release of American hostages
                                            CIA of Bush I, was Osama bin Laden.        hated United Nations building in New
by Iranian-controlled Hezbollah terror-
                                            The money was controlled by Islamist       York, and the Israeli embassy in Wash-
ists in Lebanon. The trading of arms
                                            generals who ran Pakistan’s Inter-         ington, DC. Additionally, under Clinton
for hostages was approved by Presi-
                                            Service Intelligence Agency which          the U.S. State Department and the CIA
dent Ronald Reagan and his national
                                            eventually built the militant jihadist     thwarted dozens of terrorist cells through
security staff, one member whom was
                                            movements that later formed the Tali-      quiet prosecutions, extraditions and exe-
Vice President George H. W. Bush. In
                                            ban and al-Qaeda. George W. H. Bush        cutions by allies from Albania to the Phil-
his 1991 memoir, former U.S. Marine
                                            allowed the financing for the Islamic      ippines.
Lieutenant Colonel Oliver North con-
                                            terrorists under Pakistani control with
fessed that everyone knew Reagan had
                                            U.S. taxpayer money. In 1986 and           Following the 1993 attack on the World
ordered the arms deal. Of course this is
                                            1990 the United States government          Trade Center, President Clinton sent strin-
contradicts North’s statement under
                                            under the Bush I administration li-        gent anti-terrorism legislation to Con-
oath before the Congressional commit-
                                            censed companies to export $600 mil-       gress. Despite these efforts to expand
tee investigating the arms for hostages
                                            lion worth of advanced technology and      those protections after the 1995 Oklahoma
deal. During his testimony before con-
                                            materials used by Iraq, under control of   City bombing, a coalition of civil liber-
gress he mentioned that former he and
                                            Saddam Hussein, to make WMDs such          tarians and conservatives argued that
John Poindexter met with Kuwaiti offi-
                                            as mustard gas, VX nerve agents, an-       Clinton was over reacting and his efforts
cials to free 17 convicted Shiite terror-
                                            thrax and other biological and chemi-      were a threat to constitutional rights. The
ists known as Dawa’s Prisoners who
                                            cal weapons. Papa Bush continued to        provisions of Clinton’s bill allowed the
were members of the Hezbollah move-
                                            allow these shipments even after it was    government to turn away suspect immi-
ment and were imprisoned in Kuwait
                                            learned Saddam used this technology        grants, allowed swifter deportation proce-
City. This release was intended to fa-
                                            and materials to wipe out the Kurdish      dures and authorized a new deportation
cilitate better relations with Iran. The
                                            town of Halabja in 1988.                   court that could view secret evidence.
terrorist group demanding their release
included perpetrators of the October        The spin-masters of news attacked          George W. Bush, during the 2000 presi-
1983 bombing of the U. S. Marine bar-       President Clinton for not allowing the     dential campaign, denounced this
racks in Beirut, Lebanon that killed        Sudan government to hand over Osama                   (continued on page 10)
241 Marines. Reagan, the Great Com-
April 2006
April 2006                                           Tampa Letter Carrier
                                                    Tampa Letter Carrier                                                Page Page 7
And The Beat Goes On                                                                                              by Ray Wallace

                                              if they didn’t have to do that? I feel like    separate motels
 National Conventions                         the odd person as I go to every union          throughout the vari-
                                              meeting and I don’t plan on going any-         ous convention cities.
                                              where.                                         In our convention in
M        y March article had an item about
         health insurance and in reading
it, I myself asked, “What the hell am I
                                              I have gone to a few conventions in the
                                              past and they were very interesting. It is a
                                                                                             New Orleans, one
                                                                                             other Branch 599
                                                                                             member and I were in
saying and why?” Well, it sure was not        thrilling experience to sit among thou-        the same motel while
printed the way I was thinking. What I        sands of carriers from throughout the          everyone else was everywhere else. I
was trying to ask was, wouldn’t it be         U.S.A. If you transferred in from another      think what President Good is saying
nice if, when you’re working and mak-         state you can look for your former state’s     about all delegates staying together in
ing the big money and tons of overtime,       delegation and maybe see someone you           the same motel is a great idea.
you paid into your health insurance every     know. My first convention was in San
month what the retiree pays instead of        Francisco, right after I merged Brandon        Years ago in Brandon I (as the shop
having to pay the higher premiums when        with Tampa. Jack Newman had arranged           steward) went through holy hell with ex-
you’re on a reduced income? The active        for all of Branch 599 to be in the same        carrier Bill Kizer, who became our floor
carrier while at full pay pays $120 a         small motel which was a short walk from        supervisor. He really put all (or most) of
month whereas the retiree pays $251           the convention center. It was great for        the carriers through the same hell. I
with only about half the pay and no over-     this writer who knew no one to get to          wrote about him all of the time, about
time.                                         know all of the Tampa carriers in atten-       how bad he treated craft employees. I
                                              dance. One thing I will always remember        think upper management, true to form,
I left out of that same article some of the
                                              is when we were on a bus tour one night        probably said, “This manager is treating
names of people who were at the January
                                              and the bus driver told us about some bad      people like dirt. Let’s promote him.”
Brandon Retiree Luncheon. In atten-
                                              areas to watch out for. He warned us to        And they did promote him to postmaster
dance at the luncheon but missed in the
                                              stay away from so and so street and that       somewhere.
article were Jose Hernandez, John Matta,
                                              was the street where our motel was! Ha
Jean Myers ( widow of John), Jack                                                            The other day I met an active carrier
                                              Ha! I never saw anything wrong. Al-
Davis, Karen Pasco Morlock and Kathy                                                         who works in Brandon and he said “Ray,
                                              though the area was a little rundown, the
Nelson Eldridge.                              motel was great. It was one of the best        remember how rotten Bill Kizer was?” I
                                              cities I have ever visited. I wonder why       replied, “Yes, how could I forget?” He
Our national convention is in August in
                                              they don’t go back to San Francisco. All I     answered, “Well, our new postmaster
Las Vegas. You have to have attended
                                              can figure is there must be a lot of gam-      makes Bill look like a saint.”
eight meetings per year for the two years
prior to the convention in order to be        blers in the NALC as 2006 is the third         Well, Brandon, let’s hope that upper
eligible to be paid by Branch 599 to go       time for our convention to be held in Las      management is reading this and realize
to the convention as a paid delegate. I’ve    Vegas in the last few years.                   what a great manager they have and pro-
heard carriers say, “…the only reason I                                                      mote him higher up the ladder. Other-
                                              Why it happened I don’t know but after
come to the meetings is so I’m eligible to                                                   wise, I really feel sorry for you.
                                              the San Francisco convention, convention
attend the national convention.” What
                                              delegates from Tampa started staying in a
would the attendance be at the meetings
Page 8
Page 8                                              Tampa Letter Carrier                                         November 2006
                                                                                                                       April 2006
Around The Horn                                                                                                       by Tony Diaz
                                                                                                         Financial Secretary - Branch 599

           COLCPE                           COLCPE, by signing up to be an e-              By joining the NALC e-
                                            Activist and by reading our monthly            Activist Network you
                                            Postal Record and office bulletin boards       can join together with

B     rothers and Sisters, I write my
      article this month on COLCPE, a
topic that is very important to me. Af-
                                            for the latest information. Branch 599
                                            has not been a huge contributor overall to
                                            the COLCPE campaign, however many
                                                                                           thousands of other letter
                                                                                           carriers to make your
                                                                                           voice heard. The NALC
ter reading my latest Postal Record, I      of our members are big supporters.             will send you e-mail
felt compelled to attempt to stir up                                                       Alerts when it is time to act on issues
some interest in COLCPE because it is       National would like to receive contribu-       affecting active and retired letter carri-
making a difference. On February 9,         tions by payroll deductions or by direct       ers and the future of the Postal Service.
the Senate passed S. 662, the Postal        bank account deductions so they can cre-       There are nearly 140,000 people strong
Accountability and Enhancement Act.         ate a budget and allocate funds accord-        and looking to grow. If you have not
This follows the passing of HR 22 by        ingly in order to lobbying critical legisla-   already joined you may do so by log-
the House by a vote of 410-20 last          tors as needed. Do not let that stop you if    ging on to the NALC homepage and
July. If this sounds foreign to you, this   all your allotted payroll deductions are       clicking on to e-Activist. President
legislation is the first comprehensive      maxed out or you do not wish to contrib-       Young has laid out a “Field Plan”
overhaul since the Postal Reorganiza-       ute through your bank accounts. I send a       aimed at doubling the size of the COL-
tion Act of 1970, which created the         personal check to National in care of          CPE campaign. I thought the GIMMIE
Postal Service. It is also the result of    COLCPE every 6 months; I plan to in-           5 slogan was brilliant! The Political
years of negotiations and compromises       crease my donations this year having           Action Committee wants to double the
involving lawmakers and Postal ser-         already sent $100.00 at the beginning of       number of letter carriers making con-
vice stakeholders and is vital to the       the year and will do so again this sum-        tributions by urging just $5 per pay
future of the Postal Service, as we         mer.                                           period, that works out to .50 cents per
know it now.                                                                               work day. Make a difference, become
                                            If our members would educate them-
                                            selves and truly understand how impor-         active and let your voice be heard.
COLCPE is the NALC’s Political Ac-
tion Fund and it helps elect and lobby      tant Postal Reform is and the fight we         Look forward to talking to you again in
friends of letter carriers, friends we      have every one would jump aboard. I am         the next Around The Horn.
need either in office or in “our pocket”    extremely impressed with the passion
to assist our fight in making Postal Re-    and determination President Bill Young
form successful. We can do our part in      exhibits towards this fight. His quote
preserving the six-day delivery and         says it all “We must be diligent and stay
universal service as well as postal em-     vigilant to make sure that this legislation
ployees’ rights by contributing to          does the most it can to protect our jobs.”

                                                 WEINGARTEN RIGHTS
There have been a number of carriers who have recently been called into the office to be interviewed by USPS
Postal Inspectors and have not requested union representation. Any time that you are told you are going to be in-
volved in an investigative interview which could lead to discipline you have the right to have your shop steward pre-
sent. This includes interviews held by a supervisor, station manager, postal inspector, agent from the Inspector Gen-
eral’s office or any other representative of management. Your shop steward has the right to meet with you prior to
the interview and be an active participant in the meeting, not just a note taker.
You must request representation. They do not have to offer or advise you of this right. Before the meeting be-
gins, or before you answer any questions, ask them if the interview could lead to discipline. If the answer is
yes, or maybe, tell them you will cooperate with the interview as soon as your representative is present. If the
interview could lead to criminal charges tell them that you want your attorney present!
Postal inspectors are not your friends. Please protect yourselves by having your representative present.
April 8    Tampa Letter Carrier   November 2006
                                       Page 9
Page 10                                               Tampa Letter Carrier                                                 April 2006
A Point of Personal Privilege (from page 7)
provision and even won support from          computer owned by the mastermind of           Nothing seems to enrage the citizens of
American Muslims. Prior to 9/11, the         the 1993 WTC bombing, Ramzi Yusef             America more than the President lying
Republican-controlled Congress denied        and would have allowed intelligent ex-        about having oral sex! Not the Enron
law enforcement officials authority for      perts to decode encrypted computer            and WorldCom scandals; not the in-
roving wiretaps and new powers to            links of the 9/11 plotters communicating      crease in gas prices; not the torturing of
monitor money laundering. After 9/11,        with their commanders in al-Qaeda.            prisoners; not the Downing Street
the Republicans changed their rhetoric       Former Texas Republican Senator Phil          Memo; not the disclosure of a covert
and their positions. The Clinton             Gramm blocked this Clinton administra-        CIA agent; not Katrina; not the out-
counter-terror proposals had previously      tion bill to close loopholes that let ter-    sourcing of American jobs; not spying
been attacked by a Republican Repre-         rorist groups launder money through           on American citizens; not the lobbyist
sentative from Indian:“We find it very       off-shore banks and even denounced the        scandal; not the selling of American
troubling that you’re asking us for ad-      legislation as “totalitarian.” Under          port management to foreign countries;
ditional authority to wiretap innocent       George W. Bush, the Republican con-           not insider trading; nor the deterioration
Americans when you have failed to            trolled Congress endorsed this same           of the infrastructures of state, county
explain to the American people why           legislation as essential in dismantling al-   and city governments. Nothing seems to
you abuse their civil liberties by having    Qaeda. The legislation was enacted after      stick to this new and improved Teflon
FBI files brought into the White             the death of over 3000 people in the          don.
House.” Led by former Republican             WTC attacks. This after-the-fact legisla-
Senator John Ashcroft and computer           tion was an attempt to cover-up their
lobbyists, Congress defeated a proposal      dereliction of duty to the citizens of the    “There is no worse heresy than that the
by Clinton to tighten control on encryp-     U.S. due in large part to of their arro-      office sanctifies the holder of it.”
tion software. That proposal would have      gance, incompetence and their blinding
                                                                                                                        Lord Acton
allowed law enforcement officials to de-     hatred of Clinton.
code messages found on the laptop

                                       nuf eht nioj emoC
                                 YADIRF DNA YADSENDEW YREVE
                                        03:5 TA NEPO SROOD
                                       03:6 TA TRATS SEMAG
                               LLAH SREIRRAC RETTEL APMAT EHT TA
                                       .tS SSERPYC .W 3003
                                            90633 .lF ,apmaT             5874-778-318
April 2006                                                Tampa Letter Carrier                                                       Page 11
                                               Tips for Comfortable Gardening

W        hen it comes to tools, gardeners
         today have more options than
ever before. With all the choices in col-
                                                   Carefully Choose the Right Tools

                                             Garden tools developed for proper body me-
                                                                                                   Proper care of
                                                                                                   tools can also
                                                                                                   facilitate gar-
ors, shapes and sizes, it's easy to over-    chanics (known as ergonomic tools) are no             dening tasks.
look one of the most important garden-       longer just for seniors. Today's ergonomic gar-       Keep tools
ing tools - your body.                       dening tools are designed to appeal to people of      with moving
                                             all ages who have either suffered from or want        parts in good
Many people, despite exercising proper       to prevent repetitive strain injuries, or for those   working order
care and maintenance with their other        who just desire a more comfortable, enjoyable         and oiled so
garden tools, do not spend the time or       gardening experience. The right tools created         there is little
effort properly caring for their most        in the right size and weight can save the back,       resistance
valuable tool. And for many of the hun-      knees and hips, and mean the difference be-           during use.
dreds of thousands who make gardening        tween enjoying a day in the garden and ending         Also keep hand tools sharp to ensure
America's number one outdoor hobby,          the evening with cramped hands and an aching          smooth, easy movement.
common aches and pains associated with       back or elbow.
repetitive gardening tasks can detract                                                             Garden gloves not only protect hands from
from an otherwise enjoyable experience.      GardenWay has introduced a line of gardening          hazardous chemicals, sharp items and blis-
                                             tools and gift sets designed to make basic gar-       ters, but they also help minimize the ef-
Aches and pains do not have to be a          dening tasks a little more comfortable. Its new       fects of vibration. Gloves should ideally
natural part of gardening. The following     combination kneeler/bench with foam pad, for          be form-fitting and cover the smallest area
tips and guidelines from the gardening       instance, helps remove weight from otherwise          of the hand possible, without being restric-
experts at GardenWay are designed to         sore joints as it allows gardeners to work from       tive.
turn a potentially painful chore into out-   a more comfortable sitting or kneeling position.
door enjoyment:                              Simply flip over to convert from a durable              Avoid Repetition; Variety Is Critical
                                             bench (capable of holding up to 250 pounds)
     Prepare Your Body Properly              into a convenient kneeler. Of special interest to     Repetitive movements can wreak havoc on
                                             gardeners who have difficulty raising them-           any part of the body. Enthusiastic garden-
Regardless of your age, it's important to                                                          ers who are driven to whip their gardens
take precautions before jumping into         selves up from the ground are the sturdy long
                                             handles on the sides.                                 back into shape in a matter of a day are
gardening chores. Start by spending a                                                              prone to injury from hours of repetitive
few minutes stretching to help minimize      There is also a new GardenWay strain-free tool        movements resulting from weeding, dig-
muscle soreness and the risk of tendoni-     set that features T-handles on longer shafts. T-      ging and stooping. That's why it's impor-
tis. In particular stretch your arms and     handles provide greater leverage for digging          tant to rotate gardening tasks frequently (at
back. Also be certain to have plenty of      into even the hardest soil and help keep the          least every 30 minutes) so you don't wake
water on hand to avoid dehydrating           wrist in a more neutral position. The long-           up with stiffness in the arms, legs and
while you're gardening. Here are a few       handled shafts not only limit the need to bend        back.
other key suggestions regarding body         over, but they also provide greater leverage so
positioning:                                 that everyone can effectively complete strenu-                            Rest

* Keep elbows partially bent, especially     ous gardening tasks. Sports medicine special-         Above all, don't forget to rest frequently.
when doing resistive activities.             ists estimate that women possess about 40 to 60       Even if you don't feel fatigued, take a
                                             percent of the upper-body strength of men due         break for a few minutes each hour. Your
* Hold objects with a light grasp or         to their smaller arm girth. This creates a            body will thank you later on. And you'll
pinch, avoiding a tight, sustained grip.     greater need for women to compensate with             feel more productive and actually get more
                                             longer handles.                                       done, so at the end of the day you'll feel a
* Whenever possible, work with the
forearms in a neutral position (i.e.         The weight of the tool also affects stamina and       deep sense of satisfaction rather than a
thumbs up).                                  energy levels. Look for tools that are heavy          hard-earned aching back.
                                             enough to be durable, but not so heavy they are       For more information about today's ergo-
* Watch your posture. Don't slouch or        fatiguing to use. The new GardenWay strain-
rest your weight on one arm or leg while                                                           nomic gardening tools that are designed to
                                             free tools measure only 23 inches in length,          minimize the pains and strains of garden-
you work.                                    which makes them shorter and lighter than tra-        ing, visit www.gardenway.com.
                                             ditional long-handle tools. Not only will they fit
* Use wheelbarrows and carts to trans-
                                             smaller hands, they allow the user to access
port heavy objects or tools to save your
                                             tighter spaces without straining.
back.                                                                                                       Courtesy of ARA Content
A.R. “Tony” Huerta NALC Branch 599   NONPROFIT ORG.
3003 West Cypress Street               U. S. POSTAGE
Tampa FL 33609-1617                          PAID
(813) 875-0599 fax (813) 870-0599        TAMPA FL
http://www.nalc599.com                PERMIT NO. 1285

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