Threats to privatize the U.S. Postal Service jeopardize universal access

Selling the U.S Postal Service to the highest bidder is a horrible idea

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Washington, D.C.—While there’s no lack of horrible ideas in the White House’s recent proposal to restructure the federal government (“Delivering Government Solutions in the 21st Century,” released June 21), one that may have a sizeable impact on consumers’ everyday lives is that of privatizing the U.S. Postal Service (USPS).

The Postal Service continues to play a huge role in the lives of consumers, particularly as most of us have come to rely on e-commerce. Consumers order everything from weekly meals to prescription medication and even furniture online. Consumers rely on websites like Amazon.com and eBay to send and receive packages inexpensively and often in record-breaking time—packages that are delivered daily by the Postal Service.

The USPS enjoys the highest level of satisfaction and trust of any government service or agency, according to recent surveys by Gallup and the Pew Research Center, and is most definitely not “burdening the taxpayers,” as the White House has disingenuously claimed. As a matter of fact, the agency receives zero tax dollars; it is self-supporting, relying solely on the fees it charges to send mail and packages—fees that would likely balloon under a private model.

Privatizing the USPS is just another scheme in the Administration’s plan to sell our government to the highest bidder at the expense of the governed. Consumers should be able to rely on our federal agencies to provide fair, affordable public services. 

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Through multilingual consumer education materials, community outreach and issue-focused advocacy, Consumer Action empowers underrepresented consumers nationwide to assert their rights in the marketplace and financially prosper.

 

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