Authors: Jeanette Torres
(WASHINGTON) -- The financially-strapped U.S. Postal Service is proposing to do something far more radical than just eliminating Saturday delivery to make up for its huge budget shortfall.
The Postal Service wants to eliminate 20 percent of its workforce by 2015 but can only do it by getting out of union contracts that restrict mass firings.
With the agency on a path to lose a record $9 billion during the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, the USPS says it needs to get rid of 220,000 jobs and get out of making payments to the federal health and employee pension programs that cover Postal Service workers.
According to documents obtained by The Washington Post, the Postal Service says 100,000 of those cuts are expected through attrition, while the remaining 120,000 would mostly come from layoffs if Congress grants the agency permission to get out of union contracts.
This is all independent of the agency's plans to shut down about 37,000 offices, mostly in small communities, over the next year, in addition to plans to end Saturday delivery.
Naturally, the proposal to gut collective bargaining rights is not winning over the the American Postal Workers Union and National Association of Letter Carriers. One of the groups issued a statement that said "Crushing postal workers and slashing service will not solve the Postal Service’s financial crisis."
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