USPS moves forward with new plan that will continue to slow first-class mail delivery

USPS moves forward with new plan that will continue to slow first-class mail delivery
Sam LaRussa / Wikimedia Commons

Two new members of the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) Board of Governors have expressed concern about Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's initiative to slow the delivery of first-class mail. According to NPR, the effort is part of DeJoy's 10-year postal service overhaul dubbed "Delivering For America," which was announced back in March.

Ronald Stroman, one of three newly-named governors of the board, criticized the effort to intentionally delay first-class mail and package delivery. Per the publication, the postal service has already seen a decline in first-class mail delivery. "The Postal Service said that it's three- to five-day standard for first-class mail delivery was met just 83.6% of the time in its fiscal year third quarter, compared with 88.9% in the same period last year."

Stroman expressed concern about the delays as he noted that it is "strategically ill-conceived, creates dangerous risks that are not justified by the relatively low financial return, and doesn't meet our responsibility as an essential part of America's critical infrastructure."

Stroman also highlighted that the changes "disproportionally impact our seniors, middle- and low-income Americans, [and] small businesses, who are our most loyal customers and most dependent on us."

However, no efforts were made to modify or halt DeJoy's 10-year plan despite the wave of concerns noted by members of the board and USPS regulators. In wake of criticism, the Trump-appointed postmaster general has pushed back in defense of his actions.

DeJoy made it clear that he is aware the new initiative will require some "uncomfortable changes," but he also said, "We are confident we are headed in the right direction, which is slightly away from what we have done in the past," which DeJoy contended "has not worked."

Waving off concerns, DeJoy claims the complaints about his plan are nothing more than "stakeholder push back and fatigue," saying, "We are listening and have adjusted some."

DeJoy also claims USPS critics want the mailing service "to stop what we are doing, study more, increase service, keep prices low, cut employee benefits," what DeJoy called "single-interest issues disguised as solutions."

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