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Preserving the U.S. Postal Service

Save Our Public Postal ServiceHave you heard of “A Grand Alliance to Save Our Public Postal Service“? This is a nonprofit group that has 130 local, state and national organizations coming together to promote keeping and improving the U.S. Postal Service.

The “A Grand Alliance to Save Our Public Postal Service” has become a major collective ‘voice’ that holds congress responsible for the USPS’s financial struggles; especially with laws passed in 2006. The postal service is required to pre-fund the next 75 years of retiree costs. This means $5.5 billion a year that has been taken from the postal service budget. This problem combined with the threat of privatization has caused concern by a variety of private sectors that are determined to preserve the USPS.

“We’re fighting for the rights of the people of the United States, including small business people, including people in rural areas, including people in what have become postal deserts because of the erosion of service — to have their right to a public postal service that was enshrined in the US Constitution still prevail today.”

KNOW THE FACTS (from http://agrandalliance.org/the-facts/)

  • Article 1, Section 8, Clause 7: the Postal Clause of the U.S. Constitution.  Congress is authorized ‘To establish Post Offices and post Roads;’
  • 1775: The first year of the Postal Service’s operation.
  • 240: The number of years of Postal Service operation
  • The USPS uses 0 (zero) taxpayer dollars to operate.  It is self-sufficient; all of its revenue is generated by the sale of its products and services. [source]
  • The Postal Service had an operating surplus of $1.4 billion in fiscal year 2014 and $600 million in fiscal year 2013.
  • 40% of the world’s mail volume is handled by the Postal Service. [source]
  •  It costs just $.49 to send a first-class mail across the U.S., its territories, and to U.S. military and diplomatic installations worldwide, among the lowest postage prices of any industrialized country. [source]
  •  The USPS goes everywhere – private shippers don’t. The post office delivers an average of 2.2 million packages for FedEx every day—or about 30% of FedEx’s total U.S. ground segment.  In 2012, the Postal Service delivered approximately 37 million packages for UPS, or 40% of the total increase in UPS’ ground shipments.[Source] The Postal Service delivers more than 470 million of UPS and FedEx ground packages to residences. [source]
  • In 2013, the USPS delivered mail to 153 million addresses, and 8.5 million pounds of mail to military installations around the world. [source].
  • In the first month of fiscal year 2015, letter volume increased by 7 percent and package volume increased by nearly 14 percent over the previous year.
  •  The USPS employs 626,764 people (as of Jan 2014). [source]
  • The Postal Service is the largest civilian employer of U.S. military veterans and disabled veterans. It employs about 130,000 veterans. Nearly 1/3 are disabled veterans.
  • 21% of USPS employees are African American. Minorities comprise 39%. Women comprise 40%. [source] For comparison, the U.S. labor force at large is 12% African American [DOL]
  • 81% of people aged 18-29 rated the USPS as “excellent or good”, the highest percentage of any age group. Americans rated the Postal Service the highest of 13 federal agencies. [source] [source]

HOWEVER

  • Since 2006, Congress has required the USPS to prepay future retiree health benefits 75 years in advance over a 10-year period – at a cost of approximately $5.5 billion per year.  No other business or government agency is required to do this. The Postal Service’s “losses” are the result of the pre-funding requirement.[source]
  • More than 140 mail processing facilities have closed since 2012, and 82 more are scheduled to close in 2015. [source]