Senate Democrat’s Report: DeJoy’s USPS Changes Delayed 7% Of First-Class Mail
A new report published by the Senate’s top Democrat in charge of postal oversight found that policies implemented this summer by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy caused the delay of nearly 350 million pieces of first-class mail during the five weeks those policies were in effect, The Washington Post reported. That constitutes seven percent of the nation's first-class mail.
- DeJoy’s changes included stricter dispatch schedules for transport trucks that barred extra mail trips and forced workers to leave mail behind. There was also a crackdown on overtime, which is often necessary to complete mail routes.
- Prior to the changes, the USPS routinely delivered over 90 percent of first-class mail on time, according to a data analysis by the office of Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI), the top Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
- Just two weeks after DeJoy’s changes were implemented, “on-time delivery rates hovered near 83 percent, ensnaring prescription medications, benefits checks and ballots in midterm elections," The Post reported.
On-time rates continued to deteriorate, the report said, falling to 85.3 percent the week of July 11, 82.2 percent the week of July 18, 83.6 percent the week of July 25, 82.8 percent the week of Aug. 1 and 81.5 percent the week of Aug. 8. And in crucial regions that could decide the November election, on-time rates fell 20.4 percentage points in northern Ohio, 19.1 percentage points in Detroit and 17.9 percentage points in central Pennsylvania.
- DeJoy has suspended some of his cost-cutting measures until after the 2020 election but has said high-speed mail-sorting machines and public collection boxes already taken offline will not be replaced.
- DeJoy “left in place his orders on transportation schedules — the most controversial changes — that postal workers and independent experts say are causing the most problems," according to The Post.
Peters’s report recommends that DeJoy reverse his policy directives, including the transportation schedule, and that the USPS commit to treating election mail with first-class privilege, as it has in past years.