Postal Service, Staples attempt to obscure privatization program

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‘Don’t Buy Staples’ movement is having an effect

Post office employee Detra Parker chants during a recent protest outside a Staples store in Atlanta. – David Goldman/AP photo
Post office employee Detra Parker chants during a recent protest outside a Staples store in Atlanta.
– David Goldman/AP photo

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) and Staples have apparently determined they are masters of illusion as well as privatizing mail delivery.

USPS and Staples entered a trial partnership at 82 stores in four states that allows the office supply company to offer postal services at its stores.

The American Postal Workers Union (APWU) has been urging a boycott of Staples and was joined by the American Federation of Teachers, prompting Staples, earlier this month, to announce that it would end the pilot program.

According to APWU that means only that Staples will remove Postal Service signage from its counters, and all Staples stores will now be part of the Postal Service's Approved Shipper program, which is available in thousands of locations operated by third-party retailers and allows the stores to continue providing postal service.

Postal workers protest outside a Staples store in Los Angeles. – Robyn Beck/Getty-AFP photo
Postal workers protest outside a Staples store in Los Angeles.
– Robyn Beck/Getty-AFP photo

“They intend to continue to privatize postal retail operations, replace living-wage Postal Service jobs with low-wage Staples jobs, and compromise the safety and security of the mail,” said APWU President Mark Dimondstein.

“The people of this country have a right to postal services provided by highly trained, uniformed USPS employees who are sworn to safeguard the mail,” Dimondstein said. “This attempt at trickery shows that the ‘Don’t Buy Staples’ movement is having an effect. We intend to keep up the pressure until Staples gets out of the mail business.

“The U.S. mail is NOT for sale.”

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