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Local letter carriers rally against eliminating Saturday mail service

Local letter carriers rally against eliminating Saturday mail service

By Marco Villarreal. CREATED Mar 24, 2013

Las Vegas, NV (KTNV) -- The announcement to cease delivery of first class mail on Saturdays has been met with mixed reaction around the country.

Here in Clark County, specifically with letter carriers, the majority appear upset with the decision.

Sunday they took to the streets with their frustration. It's a decision that has many letter carriers worried not just about their jobs, but how that will affect the families and business they deliver to.

All four corners of Sunset and Eastern were packed with members of the National Association of Letter Carriers Nevada Chapter.

"We've got close to 200 letter carriers that have come not just from Las Vegas, they've come from California, they've come from Arizona. We even had one fellow who came from New Jersey," said Richard Griffin, Vice President of the NALC and also a fellow letter carrier.

These letter carriers are upset over the postmaster's decision made last month to end Saturday delivery of first class mail. A move he hopes will save the USPS $2 billion, a small fraction of the $16 billion lost last year. 

"I'm not exactly sure the right way to do it, but this isn't the right way. This is just getting rid of jobs that are needed. Even people that don't work for the post office, getting the things they need too. They need their stuff 6 days a week, not just five," said Ricky Witt, whose mom is a postal worker.

But earlier this week Congress approved legislation that would save the sixth day, and sent it to the president's desk.

"We had a continuing resolution for the budget which is good until September of this year. At the end of September we're going to have to go through the whole rig and roll all over again. As everyone knows, Congress doesn't move their feet very quickly," said Griffin.

These folks said there are other options available.

"We have paid approximately $32 billion over last 8 or 9 years into a health fund for people that haven't been hired yet," said Griffin.

Using that money could help the struggling delivery service.

"People think we're swimming in red ink, but it's not as bad. Congress put us in the position that we're in right now, and only Congress can get us out," said Earl Friend, another letter carrier.

Letter carriers are asking that you email your representatives and tell them what you think of this ongoing debate.