Richard J. Durbin

03/25/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 03/26/2024 13:24

Durbin Joins Informational Picket to Voice Objections to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's 'Delivering for America' Plan


Durbin Joins Informational Picket to Voice Objections to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's "Delivering for America" Plan

DOWNERS GROVE - U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) today participated in an informational picket during U.S. Postal Service (USPS) Postmaster General Louis DeJoy's visit to voice objections to DeJoy's "Delivering for America" plan.

USPS is conducting a Mail Processing Facility Review on facilities in Champaign, Peoria, the Quad Cities, and Springfield, as well as a number of other facilities across the country. These reviews are conducted before downsizing, expanding, or closing facilities. By downsizing facilities, letter carriers will need to commute longer distances to collect mail from the facilities absorbing the processing capabilities from the downsized sites. While career employees will not be laid off, they will be faced with the choice between moving to be closer to work or commuting long distances.

"Postmaster General DeJoy's 'Delivering for America' plan, marked by its insidious agenda of downsizing processing facilities, deliberately slowing down mail delivery, and unjustifiably inflating prices, undermines the fundamental principle of universal access to reliable postal services for all Americans," said Durbin. "DeJoy's actions threaten to unravel the fabric of our communities, particularly those in rural and underserved areas, where timely mail is a lifeline for essential goods, services, and communication. We must send a clear message that this scheme, with its blatant disregard for the public good, should be marked 'return to sender'."

"Postmaster General DeJoy's plan comes at the expense of millions of working people and across Illinois," said Ilinois AFL-CIO President Tim Drea. "The plan is another way to disguise privatization and deregulation in the name of 'efficiency'. The postal service is one of the largest employers of Veterans' and these workers are the eyes and ears of their communities. DeJoy's proposed changes come at the expense of the millions of Illinoisans who rely on the trusted service of the USPS for life-saving medications, important financial documents, and their daily needs. We cannot sit idly while the Postmaster General erodes the delivery infrastructure of the U.S. Postal Service."

"Postal employees are essential to the American Public. USPS is America's oldest institution and is relied upon by millions of Illinoisans," said Luis Rivas Jr., President of the Illinois State Association of Letter Carriers. "DeJoy's 'Delivering for America' plan will adversely impact the millions of people who rely upon the postal service for critical needs like medication, financial services, and other daily essentials. We need Congress to act now."

DeJoy's "Delivering for America" plan aims to shift the structure of the post office from a legacy infrastructure to more closely mirror Amazon or UPS logistics infrastructure. DeJoy has placed an emphasis on packages, raising costs on normal postage twice a year as much as legally possible. Carriers have been forced to deliver late into the night as they are forced to drive longer distances to collect mail, postal supervisors have been forced to transport mail in personal vehicles, which is a breach of protocol, because of insufficient fleet availability.

Last week, Durbin led a letter to DeJoy with U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and U.S. Representatives Mike Quigley (D-IL-05), Eric Sorensen (D-IL-17), and Nikki Budzinski (D-IL-13) outlining concerns arising from the process and proposed changes. Durbin also joined a letter led by U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) on March 13th to DeJoy regarding the national effort to downsize processing and distribution centers as part of his "Delivering for America Plan."