Employees rally for Postal Service

Published 6:08 pm Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Current and former U.S. Postal Service employees (left to right) Timmy Gibson, Carol Smitherman, Julia Mims, Debbie Bates, Allison Lawrence, Clara Gilliland and Sandra Reed gather for a “Save America’s Postal Service” rally on Sept. 27.

Current and retired U.S. Postal Service employees gathered at the U.S. Post Office in Clanton on Tuesday, Sept. 27 as part of a nationwide “Save America’s Postal Service” rally.

The National American Postal Service, the American Postal Workers Union, the National Association of Letter Carriers, the National Postal Mail Handlers Union and the National Rural Letter Carriers Association have come together to encourage Congress to pass H.R. 1351, a bill introduced by Rep. Stephen Lynch, D-Mass. that addresses the financial crisis facing the U.S. Postal Service.

In a statement on Lynch’s website, he and Rep. Elijah E. Cummings, D-Md. said the bill “would correct the Postal Service’s overpayment the federal government of both its Civil Service Retirement System and Federal Employee Retirement System obligations, which is collectively in the range of $60 to $80 billion, providing the Postal Service with an opportunity to find long-term solutions.”

“In a nutshell, we have the money saved up, but they won’t let us use that money,” said Sandra Reed, a retired Postal Service employee. “They won’t release it to the post office.”

Allison Lawrence, a current Postal Service employee, said the new bill does not require any money from taxpayers.

Reed said Postal Service employees from Chilton County recently sent 433 signatures to Rep. Spencer Bachus in support of the bill.

“The post office has had their voice heard, but the postal workers want their voice heard,” said Julia Mims, a current Postal Service employee.