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October 1997
Vol. 1 No. 1 Page 9

Opting Guidelines
by Contract Administration Unit

Q: If a PTF carrier opts for a route, must management permit the carrier to be off on the nonscheduled days of the assignment?

A: No. Article 41, Section 2.B.5 provides that a carrier who opts for an assignment "shall work that duty assignment for its duration." Through arbitration and through Step 4 settlements, this provision has been interpreted to mean that the carrier is entitled to work the scheduled-scheduled days and hours of the assign-assignment. And where management has not permitted the employee to work the scheduled days and hours of the assignment, arbitration awards and Step 4 settlements have pro-provided pay as remedy?sometimes straight time, sometimes overtime, depending on what the employee would have been paid had the em-employee worked.

Article 41, Section 2.B.5 has not been interpreted, however, to mean that an employee who has opted for an assignment may not be required to work on a non-scheduled day. Unfortunately, any carrier?PTF or regular, on or off the overtime desired list?may be required to work on a nonscheduled day.

Q: If a PTF carrier opts for a route and is required to work on a nonscheduled day, is he or she entitled to receive out-of-schedule overtime?

A: No. Part 434.6 of the Employee & Labor Relations Manual expressly limits payment of out-of-schedule premium to full-time regular-regular employees. And as Arbitrator Zumas ruled in C# 04260:
While a part-time flexible who works a temporary full-time craft duty assignment receives certain protections and benefits of the assignment, such part-time flex-flexible carrier is not elevated to the status of a full-time regular carrier; he is still a part-time flexible carrier who receives part-time flexible carrier wages and is governed by those provisions of the Agreement and rules and regulations relating to part-time employees.

It should be noted, however, that a PTF who opts is entitled to work the scheduled days of the route. Therefore if a PTF carrier who has opted works a non-scheduled day and has five scheduled days in the week due to the opt, the employee will receive overtime for working over 40 hours in a week (and management may not avoid payment of overtime in such situations by non-scheduling the employee on one of the assignment's scheduled days).

Q: May management have clerks "hold-out" mail for an apartment building so that the mail comes to the carrier in a bundle, rather than mixed in with the rest of the mail for the route?

A: Yes. In Case No. NC-NAT-1576 (Hollywood, FL), Arbitrator Garrett ruled that management may use hold-outs for apartment buildings. Next Column

Q: If management changes an employee's schedule so that the employee may attend a remedial driving class, is the employee entitled to out-of-schedule premium?

A: No. Part 434.622 of the Employee & Labor Relations Manual provides as follows:
.622 Otherwise eligible employees are not entitled to "out of scheduled premium" under the following conditions: . . .
e. When attending a recognized training session which is a planned, prepared, and coordinated course.

Remedial driver training meets that definition.

Q: When management refuses to permit an EEO representative sufficient time to prepare an EEO complaint, should a grievance tee filed?

A: No. The National Agreement does not prescribe procedures to be followed in EEO cases? Such procedures are found in external regulations.

The appropriate course to follow in such a situation would be to file an additional complaint charging management with taking "reprisal" against the charging employee or empoloyee's representative; alternatively, the reprisal charge could simply be added to the original complaint.

This is not to say that the grievance procedure may not be used to process allegations of discrimination. Article 2 of the National Agreement does prohibit discrimination, and an employee who feels that he or she has been discriminated against because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status or handicap may file a grievance instead of, or in addition to, filing an EEO complaint.

But to complain about a violation of EEO regulations, it is better to use EEO procedures than to file a grievance.


Francis J. Connors
Vice President

Haline Overby
Assistant Secretary-Treasurer

Joseph H. Johnson, Jr.
Director of City Delivery

April, 1985

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