About NALC


How do I join NALC?

To join the union, talk to the local NALC branch steward in your postal station. They will give you Form 1187 to fill out for NALC membership or put you in touch with the local NALC branch president to get the form. If you don't know how to reach a local branch officer or the branch office, contact the NALC National Business Agent for your area, who will give you the NALC branch for your postal station.

Maintaining membership in retirement

To retain NALC membership, retiring members must sign a Form 1189 (Dues Check-off Provision). The Form 1189 authorizes the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to deduct union dues from retiree annuities. For more information, see Maintaining membership in retirement.

What is NALC?

NALC Letter Carrier's Guide

The National Association of Letter Carriers is the sole representative of city delivery letter carriers in the United States. Since it was founded in 1889, the union has defended the rights of letter carriers before abusive supervisors, unfair administrations and indifferent Congresses. NALC is the only force fighting to protect your interests as a city delivery letter carrier.

But most of all, NALC is hundreds of thousands of letter carriers like you, united to protect the quality of their jobs and the integrity of the United States Postal Service.

To find out more about the NALC, take a look at the Letter Carrier Resource Guide. The booklet will tell you about the history of the NALC, the internal makeup of the union, and the wide range of services we provide to our members.           

NALC: A union that delivers

Job security and benefits

Since 1889, NALC has helped win every pay increase and improvement in benefits letter carriers have gained. Before 1970, the union had to persuade Congress to pass a law to raise letter carriers' pay. But with the passage of the Postal Reorganization Act in that year, NALC won letter carriers the right to bargain over wages, benefits and working conditions. Since then, the average letter carrier's pay has improved dramatically.

Justice on the job

The Postal Service can be an impersonal and sometimes hostile bureaucracy. Yet because of the NALC, letter carriers can fight unwarranted discipline, discrimination and other abuses. When you have a grievance, NALC will represent you every step of the way.

On the local level, NALC stewards iron out day-to-day problems and keep an eye on safety and health conditions in the station. Stewards and branch officers provide strong support when you file a grievance procedure—including third-party arbitration if necessary.

On the national level, a computerized arbitration index assists NALC representatives in preparing your grievance. In addition, the union takes disputes with the Postal Service over the interpretation of the contract to Arbitration. NALC has helped thousands of letter carriers win reinstatement, back pay, unpaid overtime and seniority rights.

Democracy at work

NALC is one of the most democratic unions in the United States. Members vote directly for local and national officers and on proposed contracts. The convention, held every two years, is the supreme body of the union, where members elected to serve as delegates chart the course of the union and set NALC policy.

Today, NALC is more than 295,000 active and retired letter carriers in 2,500 branches across the country. National headquarters officers in Washington, DC keep an eye on Congress and the USPS. Fifteen National Business Agents coordinate activities within their postal regions; state associations promote grassroots legislative campaigns. Union members can speak out at branch meetings, vote in local and national union elections, run for office and work for policies and programs they support.

Improving your work life

NALC is committed to improving relations between postal management and letter carriers.

You can make the difference

NALC is more than the representation on the job and in Congress. NALC is thousands of letter carriers like you working together to preserve and improve their jobs and to ensure that the Postal Service will be going strong in the 21st century. Joining NALC means taking charge of your job and your career and gaining more control over your future.

Like all democratic institutions, NALC gets its strength from its members. By joining the union and keeping NALC strong, you will be helping yourself and thousands of other letter carriers and their families win the support they need.