I would like to respond to Maury Lane's Perspectives piece ("Senators, Beware: UPS Seeks to Change an Express Delivery System That's Been Working for America," May 11).
He is correct that the original Federal Express was different from United Parcel Service. The original Federal Express sought to fill a niche in the delivery service market and was successful within that niche. What Mr. Lane fails to mention is that Federal Express in the late 1990s went on an expansion program purchasing a company, Caliber Systems, which owned a company called Roadway Express, which was a direct competitor of United Parcel Service for the delivery of small packages. This company was fully integrated into Federal Express and is now known by FedEx Ground. Federal Express also purchased Viking Freight and American Freight Companies, and shortly afterward those companies were fully integrated and are now FedEx Freight. All three of the companies that were purchased were nonunion companies.
We now have two companies for all intents and purposes that are identical; so shouldn't the employees be classified the same for labor purposes? I see the issue not as a bailout for UPS, but rather a bailout for Federal Express. Who is benefiting from the two separate labor classifications? Not UPS. Who, shortly before labor contract negotiations begin, makes a point of claiming that if people want their packages delivered on time they need to switch to FedEx?
Will FedEx costs go up? Maybe. They certainly should not exceed those of their competitors. Will FedEx employees unionize? Depends on their treatment. Right now they do have some labor problems at many locations.
I am not an employee of UPS, although I do own many shares of UPS stock.