Yvette Kinard was elected to Editor of the Outlook in 2022. Yvette Began her career as a letter carrier and a member of Branch 36 in 2001. She was elected by her fellow carriers as a Shop Steward and appointed to Safety Captain in 2017. Her roles expanded as she became an On-the -Job instructor, and Formal Step A Designee in 2019. In 2020, Yvette was appointed to the position of Director of Education and her roles continued to broaden as she volunteered and was appointed to become a Employee Assistance Program Liaison (EAP). She continued to volunteer for work, and in 2022 was appointed as Food Drive Co-chair. Ultimately in 2022 Yvette was elected as Editor of the Outlook publication. In that same year Yvette was asked to train in the Dispute Resolution Process and was picked to serve on the Dispute Resolution Team, where she continues to defend the rights of all Letter Carriers.
There are so many topics I want to write about in my article this time around.
After much internal debate, I decided to write about a few topics dear to me: training
and fundraising. Training and fundraising events will be happening over the next few
months. I had the great honor of being invited to attend the Regional 15 training this
year. The classes were about different topics that affect carrier lives every day.
One of the classes I attended was the TIAREAP class. It was filled with information on how the program can get a clear picture of what a carrier may go through on their assignments. Whether it’s a business with multiple pick-ups or a complex delivery with multiple stops. The program is designed to monitor your day-to-day activities and find an average time for your route. That class was extremely informative and I left there with a message I want to share with each one of you. Do not take any shortcuts, do not run your route (it will be impossible to keep up with that speed forever) and do everything the proper way. Do not let anyone make you feel rushed to fit a number on the computer. If you need to make comfort stops, then do so. No one can tell you what your body needs. The program does not have feelings and your input is a must if your station is picked for TIAREAP. Explain everything about your day and what problems may arise.
The other class I attended was given by RAA Gonzalez. What an amazing and engaging class, RAA Gonzalez kept the class attentive with his costume changes and messaging. He went over the importance of sometimes teaching management to ensure contract compliance and to name the members of Management who choose not to follow the contract. His class was filled with lessons in OT admin and explained how it is a tool that was developed to prevent Article 8 grievances. Some of the things I learned in that class made me wonder why we have so many issues with management not complying and understating Article 8.
One of the most important classes that I had the delight of attending did not occur at regional training, but at our very own Branch 36 Meeting Hall. On March 1st, VP Sonny Guadalupe gave a much-needed class on route adjustments. I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but management has chosen to conduct adjustments on the combo wagons in various stations without the knowledge of the Branch. They are attempting to cut assignments and if you’re not careful, you could fall victim to their senseless acts. Sonny’s advice to everyone in the room, do not take shortcuts. Do your route the same way every day, work in a safe manner and ask questions.
Branch 36 will be offering more training in the future and are constantly looking for topic recommendations. Knowledge is not meant to be kept to yourself. It is meant to be shared so that all of us are empowered. No one knows everything, we must share our knowledge to those coming behind us to keep them informed so they can be afforded the same job security that we have.
Finally, I want to talk about fundraising events. Charlie, Pasky, Sonny, Danielle and Melinda all do a great job organizing and imploring the members to give back. Last month, Branch 36 hosted a comedy show and it was a complete success. All the proceeds went to the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA). Guess what? There is another one coming on May 20th. Get your tickets early, they sell out quick. Another fundraiser that happens every May is the Food Drive. This year we are lucky to have Shirtedra Thomas and Charles Kinard as the co-coordinators. I can assure you that they are both working behind the scenes getting everything ready for the kickoff. Branch 36 members are serious about our Food Drive. We push to give back to the same communities we work in every day. Donate food, buy a shirt or two and push your friends and family to get involved.
Until next time brothers and sisters, stay safe and I look forward to seeing everyone at the next meeting and training class. Remember, Each One Teach One!