Hatch (Act) a Plan to Get Involved This Election Season!

Judy Beard

May 20, 2024

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As we deepen our involvement in the 2024 election season, it is important to refresh your understanding of your rights and limitations under the Hatch Act.

The Hatch Act is a federal law that was passed in 1939 and regulates how federal employees take part in partisan political activities. The Office of Special Counsel (OSC) is tasked with enforcing the Hatch Act.

As a postal worker, the Hatch Act applies to you. It is important to understand what you can and cannot do to be politically active. Please see below for a list of some permitted and prohibited activities:

Permitted Activities:

  • May register and vote as you choose.
  • May be a candidate in nonpartisan elections.
  • May contribute money to partisan groups and candidates in partisan elections.
  • May campaign for or against candidates in partisan elections.
  • May express opinions about partisan groups and candidates in partisan elections while not at work or using official authority.

Prohibited Activities:

  • May not be a candidate in partisan elections.
  • May not solicit, accept, or receive political contributions (including hosting or inviting others to political fundraisers).
  • May not engage in political activity while on duty, in the workplace, wearing a uniform or official insignia, or in a government vehicle. For example:
  • May not wear, display, or distribute partisan materials or items.
  • May not perform campaign-related chores.
  • May not make political contributions.
  • May not use email or social media to engage in political activity.

For a more extensive list of permitted and prohibited activities, as well as some frequently asked questions and social media guidance, please visit: apwu.org/hatch-act-election

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