Your Future...?
I haven't written an article for the last few issues of this Branch 916 newsletter titled "THE REALY BOX". It's been around a long time, the Relay Box that is, like a lot of your leadership. I'm talking about the officers that lead this branch, they are and have always dedicated to the best interest of your wellbeing. These Sisters and Brothers have given more than you realize. They have given you time, weather you asked for or not.

As I get older I realize how valuable time is. I know I'm not as old as some of you reading this but, I am 54 and I have worked as a Letter Carrier for over 20 years and I still do to this day. Anyway back to where I was heading with this article. The time these people have put in for you is un-measureable, time away from their families, jockeying their schedules, their lives for you! And they keep on keeping on, for you.

These are the same folks that lead Branch when I started. At least the majority is. So if I was new to this career/job. I would be concerned, the reason is, because 60% of the people making decisions that affect you and your local union branch are retirees. First of all I want to say how valuable our retired members are to this Union. They can do things that active members can't such as go on the TV and speak the truth about postal management without any repercussion. They come to rallies, they make phone calls to congress all for you. They do more than more active carriers do for themselves.

I have nothing but respect for our retired members, they did their time in the trenches!

What I'm getting at is, when we are all gone who is going to take care of business? Which of you active carriers with less than 5 years in, going to step up and learn from the ones who are still around to teach you the ways of the union? Let me put it this way, my number one goal as president has been to find my replacement, someone I can mentor into a leadership position, whether it be the President or some other position in the branch. My Vice President, Brian Bradley does a great job and handles anything I throw his way. But he is retired and like the other retirees he is disconnected from the workroom floor.

There has been so many changes with the way we do our jobs over the last few years. It's hard for people who haven't carried mail in that time frame to even begin to understand what we do on a daily bases now. It's the normal routine for our new hires, they don't the old way. Some of us who have been around for awhile remember those days and if their like me, they embrace the change and make it work.

Just like the Postal Service, the NALC is changing. We still enforce the contract and protect your rights. As leaders of this Union we know change is what the USPS needs to stay competitive in the digital age. We need people who understand this concept of change to get involved at the local and national levels of the NALC to help this union and postal service to be around for years to come.

All it cost is your time to get involved, come to a Union meeting once a month. Find out where you can help, you might have a skill that you think is not needed in the branch, but you could be wrong. And you won't know until you know how the union functions.
It's your future and more change is coming, be part of it!
916 Delivers!