Michigan postal workers express concern about current working conditions

Postmaster general says he's taking action in midst of November election

United States Postal Service workers in Michigan express concern about current working conditions. Fore more information: https://www.clickondetroit.com/.

There are worries about mail-in ballots for the November election and now the U.S. postmaster general said he’s taking action.

This comes amid reports of diminished hours for letter carriers and the dismantling of mail sorting machines ahead of the election.

“They can tweet away, they can make all kinds of statements, and say the things that they want to say but until it matches the actual implementation on the ground, that they’re not going to do that,” said Rep. Rashida Tlaib.

Tlaib’s spoke in response to the recent statement from Postmaster General Louis DeJoy about concerns of current conditions inside post offices nationwide and worries about mail in ballots.

DeJoy released a statement stating, “The postal service is ready today to handle whatever volume of election mail it receives this fall.”

“But the changes were already made. Until those machines get back, until those boxes get back into our neighborhoods, where we can actually put our ballots in, until the actions meet that statement. I think we don’t fighting,” said Tlaib.

Several postal workers complained about mailboxes being removed across the country. In Michigan, Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said actions speak louder than words and right now, she cannot and won’t believe anything the postmaster general has to say.

“Words are great. I’m looking for action and we’ll continue to hold their feet to the fire and restore the action is following the words and also the changes that are already been made are rectified,” Benson said.

“At my location, four machines have been removed. Those machines are capable for running 35,000 pieces per hour. So you multiply that times four, per hour and you realized exactly just how many pieces of mail would be able to move and how that would slow the process down,” said postal worker Keith Combs.

Combs said those are just some of the conditions they’re facing at work. Tuesday afternoon, workers and local lawmakers joined forces to make sure their voices were heard.

“Never did I imagine, when I went to Congress, that I would be standing here today, as a line of defense, against a President who actively seek to destroy, a democracy and dismantle the postal service,” said Rep. Brenda Lawrence.

“We stand before the United States Postal Service to say, heroes work here and we have your back,” said Rep. Haley Stevens.

“People who work for the United States Postal Service have come to work, have put themselves at risk, in order to meet the commitment,” said Rep. Dan Kildee.

Several voters are concerned that the ballots won’t be counted but Benson said they’re working to make sure that won’t happen.

“We’re also installing close to 1,000 drop boxes all across the state of Michigan for citizens to return their ballots if the law doesn’t change,” she said.

About the Authors:

DeJanay Booth joined WDIV as a web producer in July 2020. She previously worked as a news reporter in New Mexico before moving back to Michigan.