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UndeliveredFrom the Great Postal Strike of 1970 to the Manufactured Crisis of the U.S. Postal Service$
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Philip F. Rubio

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781469655468

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469655468.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.northcarolina.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of North Carolina Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NCSO for personal use.date: 23 September 2021



(p.1) Introduction

Philip F. Rubio

University of North Carolina Press

This introductory chapter argues that this strike was a ground-breaking, successful rebellion against the federal government and postal union leadership. Both organized and spontaneous, it was a strike that also helps reveal rank-and-file militancy during that time as something rising, not falling--especially in the growing public sector. Postal labor was vital to the movement of mail, and postal workers were well positioned to wildcat by virtue of being so thoroughly unionized yet forbidden by law to strike. The stage had already been set for upsurge with the 1960s spike in the hiring of African Americans, women, veterans, and young people, and with a leading role played by New York City postal workers. This chapter draws connections between the strike and the resulting Postal Reorganization Act, which subsequently left the U.S. Postal Service vulnerable to subsequent laws and policy measures that harmed the agency’s financial viability.

Keywords:   Wildcat strike, rank-and-file militancy, New York City, postal scholarship, Postal Reorganization Act, postal workers, African Americans, women, young people

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