We Need Your Help! (Does Your Postal Facility Look Like This?)

Debby Szeredy

March 14, 2022

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(This article first appeared in the March/April 2022 issue of the American Postal Worker magazine)

The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act of 2006 that helped manufacture a financial crisis at USPS was passed by Congress with only a voice vote. This was a plan that many believed would be the beginning of privatizing the Postal Service, not enhancing it. Looking at the plan, it utilized more contract drivers, caused massive downsizing of mail processing facilities, forced over a $5 billion annual payment to the Treasury each year and helped our competitors.

Between 2006 and 2012 the USPS downsized over 284 facilities by taking out their mail processing equipment. In 2012, management proposed an additional 82 facilities to consolidate, calling it Phase 2. Phase 2 could not be done without adversely affecting the transportation network and ending overnight delivery of first-class mail within a geographical area from the facility. Over 69 of the plants had their canceling machines (AFCS) taken out, forcing the raw mail arriving to their facility to be transported by truck to another understaffed facility with minimal space that on average is between 2-4 hours away. This caused further delays of that mail, and required the USPS to reduce the service standards in 2015

PMG DeJoy then reduced the service standards again in 2020, wreaking havoc on our ability as workers to provide the great service we had provided before the 2012 changes. His plan  also utilizes Surface Transfer Centers (mostly contracted out) to take the place of our Mail Processing Facilities. The consolidations caused much of the bloated transportation costs by utilizing more contractors to deliver our mail, another step to privatizing.   

We need Postal facilities fully restored with mail processing equipment, properly postal staffed, and we need our 2012 service standards back (94%-97% performance scores).

We still need Congressional Members to sign onto H Res. 119, “Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the United States Postal Service should take all appropriate measures to restore service standards in effect as of July 1, 2012”. We need your help. Right now, there are 138 House members co-sponsoring the resolution. 20 Republicans have signed on.  If we can get this approved in Congress, we  can help save our Postal Service from privatization. We need to educate our own House and Senate members. 

Please do this one thing today: Go to congress.gov, and search for H. Res 119. Click on the cosponsors tab. Look at the right top side where you can choose to sort, and click “sort by state”. See the list of those representatives that have signed on in your state.  If your representative is missing, contact their local office and persuade them to co-sponsor the resolution and help get it on the floor.

The answer is easy, but it takes all of us together to force the USPS to de-centralize our postal facilities and go back to the 2012 Service Standards. We can only provide better service when there are more postal first-class letter and package mail sorting facilities and better staffing that utilizes postal workers in a non-hostile work environment, who can provide prompt, secure, sanctity of our mail service and faster service that safeguards our mail ballots, our democracy for 2022 and beyond. 

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