(This article was first reported in the November 2017, Local Newsletter)
Written by: Kathy Kustner Clerk Craft Director of APWU, SJAL #0526
Before you put your signature on your 3971, first make sure it is yours. Make sure that the date or dates on it are correct. If you have called out using FMLA, make sure that it says it is FMLA in the Remarks section of the slip. Make sure the correct amount of hours are listed. It is very important to write the date that you are signing the 3971, next to your name. This is very important to the Steward who would be representing you, should Management issue you discipline at a later date.
The Zero Tolerance Policy states:
“..there is no excuse for and will be no tolerance of violence or any threats of violence by any one at any level of the Postal Service; and there is no excuse for and will be no tolerance of harassment, intimidation, threats, or bullying by anyone. “
This also means that a supervisor is not allowed to be in your personal business, asking you questions about you life, only to turn around and broadcast it to the workroom floor. They are not allowed to be sharing your Annual Leave bank or Sick Leave bank with your co-workers either. A supervisor can not spend the their entire shift, going from employee to employee, being aggressive, loud and abusive, and making inappropriate comments about everyone.
A supervisor is not allowed to make comments to you about how you are running mail on a machine using foul language, talk to you in a condescending, demeaning manner. The harassment can also come in the form of actions against you.
If you are a witness to such behavior, you need to notify a steward and give a statement. These statements are important, as now the supervisor’s behavior is documented and the Union has a paper trail on the abusive supervisor, to which they can use to see what avenue they must pursue, to make it stop.
You cannot not be afraid that management will retaliate against you for giving statement for witnessing abusive behavior against a co-worker. Retaliation against and employee is prohibited when Congress enacted the “Notification and Federal Employee Antidiscrimination and Retaliation Act of 2002”, which is now known as the No FEAR Act. The Act also requires the USPS to provide this notice to Postal Service employees, former Postal Service employees and applicants for the Postal Service employment to inform you of the rights and protections available to you under Federal antidiscrimination laws and whistleblower protection regulations.
You also have the right to file an EEO. If you feel you are being discriminated because of race, color, religion, genetic information, national origin, sex, age (40+), physical or mental disability, or in retaliation for engaging in EEO-protected activity you must consult an EEO counselor before filing a complaint of discrimination.
Request EEO counseling by calling one of these TOLL-FREE numbers:
888-EEO-USPS (888-336-8 777)
*All employees are to be treated with dignity and respect.
**All employees are to be treated equally and fairly.
***All employees are entitled to a safe working environment.