Tue. May 28th, 2024

Statement of NALC President Brian L. Renfroe on the hazard of excessive heat

June 26, 2023
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America’s letter carriers often work in dangerous environments. There are numerous factors that pose threats to our safety and health on the job. Recently, violent crime has increased and resulted in injuries to letter carriers and, unfortunately, even loss of life. As we continue to utilize every possible avenue to stop this violence against our members, we are continuously reminded of another dangerous threat to the safety and health of most letter carriers – excessive heat.

Unmitigated excessive heat can cause heat stress, often resulting in serious illness or death. Unfortunately, we have seen far too many examples of this over the last several years, including in 2023. This hazard becomes a greater threat every year, as science shows that temperature and heat indices are steadily increasing.

Over the last decade, NALC has fought fiercely in a number of forums to protect letter carriers by insisting that the Postal Service create and enforce a comprehensive heat illness prevention program (HIPP) that protects our members by mitigating the hazard posed by excessive heat. We have participated in extensive litigation with the Postal Service and the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), as well as engaged the Postal Service directly to create and implement a HIPP that helps protect our members. The current USPS HIPP is available here.

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