|TRAFICANT, James A., Jr.,|
Youngstown, Ohio – U.S. Rep. James A. Traficant, Jr. (D–OH) wants to meet as soon as possible with Postal Service officials to learn what they intend to do about the serious workplace problems at post offices in Northeast Ohio. Traficant is troubled by what he heard from postal employees at a public forum he hosted on Saturday at Youngstown City Hall on preventing post office violence. "The problems in the Youngstown area appear to be so serious that we should meet as soon as possible," noted Traficant in a letter sent today to James Johnston, district manager for the Postal Service in Akron, and Robert Furillo, the Youngstown postmaster.
"It is obvious to me that the labor-management dispute procedures the Postal Service currently has in place have been ineffective in resolving these problems," asserted Traficant. At Saturday's forum Traficant heard from a number of postal employees about problems in the workplace. These include racial discrimination, sexual harassment, mistreatment of workers with disabilities and other actions by management that have fostered a volatile work environment.
"I am also troubled by the fact that many postal employees voiced heartfelt concerns about retaliation from Postal Service management if the employees spoke out about their concerns," said Traficant in his letters to the Postal Service. "I hope these concerns are not justified. But the fact that the employees voiced them is an indication that, at the very least, a serious perception problem exists relative to labor's view of management. Obviously, any documented cases of retaliation would be viewed very seriously by me and other Members of Congress." Traficant intends to call for Congressional hearings on the problems in the Youngstown area post offices when the 106th Congress convenes in January.2009