In new letters to USPS district leaders responsible for Maryland operations, lawmakers cite aggravating mail delays, worsening problems with parcels and plummeting public trust
“These problems have not subsided since the end of the holiday season. In fact, we have heard increasingly urgent stories from more and more constituents throughout the past month.”
WASHINGTON – The full Maryland congressional delegation, including U.S. Senators Ben Cardin and Chris Van Hollen and Congressmen Steny Hoyer, Dutch Ruppersberger, John Sarbanes, Kweisi Mfume, Andy Harris, M.D., Anthony Brown, Jamie Raskin and David Trone, today continued to urge U.S. Postal Service leadership at all levels to resolve persistent and widespread delivery delays. In new correspondence to the district managers of the Capital and Baltimore districts, the federal delegation cites numerous reports from constituents of “serious, persistent mail delivery delays” involving both letters and parcels.
“Packages have been delayed while mail has been delivered to the wrong addresses or not delivered at all,” the members of Congress write. “These problems have not subsided since the end of the holiday season. In fact, we have heard increasingly urgent stories from more and more constituents throughout the past month.”
“At a time when so many Marylanders are already experiencing financial hardship, these problems are leading to the imposition of improper late fees after bills are delayed in the mail. The delivery of essential checks, including economic impact payments, has also been affected.
“Based on direct constituent outreach as well as an enclosed letter to the Maryland Congressional Delegation from the Maryland State Medical Society dated January 25, 2021, we understand that delays in the delivery of pharmaceuticals are having a ‘devastating effect … on patient care.’
“Municipal governments in our state are constrained in their ability to provide essential services by late receipt of revenue through the postal service. Finally, these delays are impeding the ability of Maryland small businesses to continue to operate at a time when they are already facing serious challenges.”
The lawmakers continued, ““We understand that these delays are not unique to the Capital District [and the Baltimore District] and that like other districts nationwide, you are facing both elevated demand and staffing challenges resulting from the accelerated spread of COVID-19 in our region. Based on our conversations with representatives of postal unions and employees in Maryland, we are also aware that many of the operational changes pursued by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy contribute to the delays…. We are committed to working with you to restore reliable postal service as soon as possible.”
The members of the congressional delegation are calling upon Postal Service leaders to provide a thorough accounting of missed delivery deadlines in recent months, as well as for currently backlogged deliveries. The members of Congress also are demanding that the USPS provide a realistic estimate of when normal operations will be restored.