The postal service is slowing deliveries to save money.
Starting today, October 1, the United States Postal Service will be experiencing longer delivery times on some parcels and packages, as well as higher costs on first-class deliveries. This is part of a plan proposed by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, which according to him, is the first step in a 10-year process to make the postal service more modern and competitive.
Going forward, the USPS’ typical three-day delivery time for first class mail, including letters, bills, and tax forms among other things, will be stretched out to approximately five days or less. Locally-traveling single-piece first class mail will still arrive within two business days.
“The postal service has shown steady improvements for all first-class mail, marketing and periodical mail categories over the last seven months,” a USPS spokesperson told CBS. “We have worked tirelessly to overcome challenges from recent storms and continue to recruit thousands of employees for the upcoming holiday peak season.”
“Our 10-year strategy will reinforce the postal service’s obvious strengths and address our obvious weaknesses and enable us to continue to meet the needs and expectations of the American people and our universal service mission,” DeJoy said in a statement.
USPS to slow delivery starting today https://t.co/oqYfYUt09L
— CBS News (@CBSNews) October 1, 2021
Critics of this move say that the elderly and disabled will be disproportionately affected by the increased delivery times. Those who, for example, pay their bills by mail could miss their payments if they aren’t aware of the changeover. “It’s the least fortunate who will be hurt hardest by this,” postal expert Paul Steidler told CBS. “Everything in American society is getting faster, it seems, except for the mail delivery — which is now going to get slower.”
Others believe that this course of action will have precisely the opposite of the intended effect; rather than making the USPS more competitive, it will only discourage people from using the service further.