(August 26, 2014) A postal workers union has won the latest round in its fight with the United States Postal Service over a program to offer postal products in Staples Inc. stores.
Earlier this month, an administrative law judge in Washington, D.C., ruled that the postal service must provide the union with a copy of a confidential agreement with the retailer as well as hundreds of emails between the two groups. The union had filed charges with the National Labor Relations Board alleging that the agreement violates a subcontracting provision and other terms of the union’s contract with the postal service.
The judge rejected the postal service’s argument that providing the requested documents would be too burdensome. “Rather, it did not want to provide the requested materials and was throwing straw arguments as roadblocks in the way for the union to obtain them,” the judge wrote.
Mark Dimondstein, president of the American Postal Workers Union, said he welcomed the ruling. “We think this is a secret, dirty deal between the postal service and Staples and we want transparency for this country and the postal workers,” he said.
Darleen Reid, a postal service spokeswoman, declined to comment, citing the ongoing litigation. The agency has until Sept. 10 to appeal the ruling.
A spokesman for Staples couldn’t immediately be reached to comment. The company isn’t a party to the labor dispute.