Twin Cities postal workers protest over short staffing, working conditions

Postal workers rallied outside an Eagan post office on Saturday, demanding improved working conditions and changes to what they say is a toxic work environment across the United States Postal Service (USPS) system.

"Short staffing creates bad morale in offices," said local American Postal Workers Union president Dave Cook. He says some employees are also harassed for missing work when sick, so he organized the weekend protest to call on USPS management to do better.

"Treat your employees with respect. They deserve time off, they deserve breaks, they deserve not to be talked down to," Cook said.

Mail processing clerk Dana Fitzpatrick says she’s seen the effects of the poor work environment firsthand, "we see each other more than we see our own families half the time."

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However, USPS denied the allegations and responded with the following statement:

"The position being presented here by the leadership of the APWU is absent of anything based in reality. The facts are… that over the past two years, we have worked diligently with our union and management associations to address our shared goals of employee recruitment and retention, workplace safety, and career training and advancement. We have focused steadily on stabilizing our workforce resulting in employee availability and overtime requirements being at the most favorable levels in many years. We have converted 125,000 pre-career workers to full-time career employees since October 2020, including 50,000 conversions between April 2022 and March 2023. We have already reversed years of declining service reliability, and now 98 percent of the nation’s population receives their mail and packages in less than three days, and we are working hard to correct service-related issues in the other limited areas.

"By developing the high-performing operation envisioned by our Delivering for America 10-year plan, we will create the safest and healthiest environment possible for our employees. For additional details on our progress, please see our Delivering for America Second-Year Progress Report released this week."