Carper Statement on OIG Report Confirming Abrupt USPS Policy Changes Resulted in Detrimental Delivery Delays

WASHINGTON, D.C. –  Today, U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), a senior member on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee (HSGAC), released the following statement regarding the United States Postal Service (USPS) Office of Inspector General’s report entitled, “Operational Changes to Mail Delivery.” The report responds to Senators Carper’s recent request that the USPS Inspector General investigate all recent staffing and policy changes put in place under Postmaster General Louis DeJoy.

“Over the summer, I asked the Inspector General at the U.S. Postal Service for much needed answers regarding the sudden and disruptive changes being made by Postmaster DeJoy. Not only were these changes causing detrimental delays for seniors, small business, veterans and families who rely on the mail, but they were also being made just months before an election in which an unprecedented number of Americans would be casting their votes by mail due to an ongoing public health crisis.

“Now, the Office of the Inspector General has confirmed what my Democratic colleagues and I suspected from the start and even saw firsthand. First, leadership at the Postal Service conducted ‘no analysis of the service impacts’ that these abrupt changes would have on Americans across the country. Second, these changes had severe impacts on the millions of customers who rely on the Postal Service, especially in the middle of a pandemic. Additionally, these changes were made without consultation with the Postal Regulatory Commission (PRC) – the very entity that regulates the Postal Service – or Congress, which conducts oversight of the Postal Service.

“As a result of these failings, the American people suffered. I heard from Delawareans up and down my state who were affected by these shortsighted changes. I know there stories were all too similar to the ones that my colleagues heard from their constituents all across our country. The bottom line is that the Postal Service is supposed to serve the American people. And, in the midst of a deadly pandemic, when so many people were so much more dependent on the Postal Service than they had ever been before, the Postal Service failed to do just that. The U.S. Postal Service is an invaluable American institution and we in Congress must continue to conduct rigorous oversight to make sure that it serves the needs of all Americans – from those living in our largest urban centers to residents of our smallest rural communities.  I look forward to working with the Inspector General, the PRC, and my colleagues in the coming weeks to determine how we can better ensure that any future service changes made by the Postal Service are well thought out and do not disrupt critical service for customers.”