APWU Chief Calls Large Mailers 'Vermin'

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The head of the American Postal Workers Union referred to large mailers as "vermin" in an article he wrote on the presidential reform commission that was published in the union's newsletter last month.


In the article, APWU president William Burrus criticized the commission's recommendations, some of which would affect postal employee benefits and the collective bargaining process if enacted. The commission placated mailers at the expense of postal employees, middle management and the public, Burrus wrote.


"Efforts have been made to reach common ground with the large mailers, overlooking the fact that the mailers are not allies, but rather are vermin that, given the opportunity, would suck the lifeblood out of every right and benefit that has been achieved," Burrus said in the article. "Their fundamental goal is to reduce postal wages and benefits in order to keep their postage costs low."


Burrus has been outspoken in his opposition to the postal reform commission's recommendations in the past. In September, he called the commission's report to Congress and President Bush "fundamentally dishonest" and criticized testimony given by commission co-chairman James A. Johnson to the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee.


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