ELMWOOD PARK, Ill. (CBS) — Roughly 200 postal workers and supporters picketed Saturday afternoon in front of a suburban Staples store, demonstrating against the postal service partnership with the office supply chain to provide some mail services.
WBBM’s Mike Krauser reports American Postal Workers Union bused in protesters outside a Staples store on Harlem Avenue in Elmwood Park.
“The public will not have their mail protected like they should, their privacy protected, so this is not a good deal for the customer and it is not a good deal for the workers because it is replacing overtime and living wage jobs, which postal jobs are, with low wage, poverty jobs and that is not good for the workers, it is not good for our neighborhoods, it is not good for our country,” said Mark Dimondstein, the president of the APWU.
He said if the Postal Service had it’s way, it would privatize everything it does.
Mark Reynolds with the Postal Service was standing off away from the protesters.
“What we are doing is trying to offer our customers expanded access to our products and services so that we can expand the business and remain strong for years to come,” said Reynolds. “The employees who are handling the postal duties in the pilot program are trained by postal employees. They are thoroughly conversant in postal policies.”
Reynolds says the Postal Service has no intention of privatizing and that they will evaluate the pilot program in September.
The store in Elmwood Park is not one of those involved in the pilot program. About 80 Staples stores, none in Illinois, are part of the program, which the Postal service says could expand to 1500 stores after the program is evaluated in September.