Aug 1, 2020 5:05 PM ET
“Postal Service backlog sparks worries that ballot delivery could be delayed in November”
iCrowd Newswire -
Aug 1, 2020
The Washington Post’s Michelle Lee and Jacob Bogage write:
The U.S. Postal Service is experiencing days-long backlogs of mail across the country after a top Trump donor running the agency put in place new procedures described as cost-cutting efforts, alarming postal workers who warn that the policies could undermine their ability to deliver ballots on time for the November election. […]
- DeJoy, a North Carolina logistics executive who donated more than $2 million to GOP political committees in the past four years, approved a series of changes that took effect July 13 that the agency said were aimed at cutting costs for the debt-laden mail service. They included prohibiting overtime pay, shutting down sorting machines early and requiring letter carriers to leave mail behind when necessary to avoid extra trips or late delivery on routes.
- The new policies have resulted in at least a two-day delay in scattered parts of the country, even for express mail, according to multiple postal workers and union leaders. Letter carriers are manually sorting more mail, adding to the delivery time. Bins of mail ready for delivery are sitting in post offices because of scheduling and route changes. And without the ability to work overtime, workers say the logjam is worsening without an end in sight.
- “I’m actually terrified to see election season under the new procedure,” said Lori Cash, president of the American Postal Workers Union (APWU) Local 183 in Western New York.
- “I vehemently weighed in that this is wrong,” said Mark Dimondstein, president of APWU, which represents more than 200,000 postal employees and retirees. “It’s wrong for the people of the country, it’s wrong for the public Postal Service. It drives away business and revenue. And it’s wrong for the workers.”