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NALC's statement on USPS Q2 financial report

From Fredric Rolando, president of the National Association of Letter Carriers

The Postal Service quarterly financial report for January through March provides two important lessons about the U.S. Postal Service. It reflects USPS’ continuing importance to the American people and the U.S. economy. The figures for February, just before the pandemic’s economic impact, show a strong 5 percent revenue increase over the same month last year—contributing to a quarterly revenue increase of $348 million year over year.

But starting in the second half of March, when the pandemic essentially shut down the U.S. economy, the USPS reports "plummeting" mail volumes. The USPS says the economic shutdown will cost it about $22 billion over the next 18 months—and that without federal aid USPS could run out of money in the fall. A revered American institution that is based in the Constitution and has 90 percent public approval faces an existential threat.

That is why temporary federal funding is urgently needed, so the USPS can weather the storm and continue to provide Americans and their businesses with the industrial world’s most-affordable delivery network. Just like the airlines and hotels and small businesses, the USPS, which also operates on earned revenue, needs assistance in these unprecedented times.

This crisis is occurring even as letter carriers show more than ever that they are indispensable, as they put themselves at risk delivering public health alerts, medical supplies, tests, prescriptions, relief checks and online purchases to households sheltering in place. Already, 54 postal employees have died and more than 2,000 have contracted the virus.

Once the economy reopens, the Postal Service will help facilitate the resurgence, as it always does after economic downturns.

A bipartisan survey by North Star Opinion Research and Hart Research Associates shows that 92 percent of registered voters across party lines and regions—including 90 percent of Republicans, 96 percent of Democrats and 90 percent of rural voters—want Congress to appropriate funds in the next round of financial relief legislation to allow the Postal Service to maintain operations through the coronavirus crisis. Americans expect the House, the Senate and the administration to deliver for the Postal Service.