One Student’s Perspective: Should We Keep the U.S. Postal Service Alive?

When I started working for the post office in May 2013, I was able to get an inside look into what life is like behind the front counter of the post office. Many people say that the post office should be dead. Why should this concern us employees of the post office? Because we’re not just your ordinary mail carrier, but we’re people that depend on this job. We depend on this job to support our families and to provide a living. So yes, it worries us.

Many people say that the post office should be dead. Why should this concern us employees of the post office? Because we’re not just your ordinary mail carrier, but we’re people that depend on this job. We depend on this job to support our families and to provide a living. So yes, it worries us.

Mike Sykes, who has worked at the post office for over 20 years and is the postmaster at Chilhowie’s Post Office, said the first thing that pops in his mind is emails when discussing if or not the post office should die.

“It’s instantaneous [emails] to where a written letter or billing takes time to get from one place to another,” said Sykes. He also says it’s important in today’s modern society to preserve the privacy of handwritten letters, as opposed to email, which is vulnerable to hacking. According to Sykes, the postal service is also one of the biggest employers in America.

“The thing that a lot of people don’t understand is that not only does the post office, the postal service itself, employ about 300,000 people…so in effect, the postal service is still one of the biggest employers in the country,” explained Sykes.

According to the U.S. Postal Service website, the number of career employees at the post office is 493,381 and the number of non-career employers is 131,732. That’s over 600,000 people that depend on the postal service to stay open just so they can have a job to provide for them or their families.

Not only is the post office one of the biggest employers in America, it is also the biggest employer for veterans. According the U.S. Postal Service website, the U.S. Postal Service has a long history of providing career opportunities to veterans, reservists and their family members. The postal service employs over 113,000 military members and veterans within the organization.

Sykes is a veteran, and so is John Wood, his employee at Chilhowie, who has been a clerk at the postal service for 17 years. Wood also commented on the earlier question of why some people think the post office is a dying job.

“It’s amazing how much has changed in the world of the postal service since I’ve been here. When I first started, I rarely had to show people how to mail a letter or what to put on the envelope. Now, it’s mind boggling how most of today’s generation has no idea what they’re doing,” said Wood. When asked how much it concerns him that most of

When asked how much it concerns him that most of today’s generation doesn’t know how to send physical mail or how to write an address on an envelope, Wood immediately nodded.“Absolutely. Of

“Absolutely. Of course it does. It really makes you think that the post office is truly dying. And it’s sad, because people should really care about the post office,” said Wood.

According to congress.gov, there is a bill that is in the house called ‘H.R. 756 Postal Service Reform Act of 2017.” Among other purposes, the proposed bill would restore the financial solvency and governance of the U.S. Postal Service in order to ensure the efficient and affordable nationwide delivery of mail. According to piworld.com (printing impression), this bill would enable the post office to be more efficient in cutting costs, streamlining and securing mail delivery, strengthening accountability, and improving oversight.

Piworld.com also explains how the bill would address some concerns of customers and employees, such as guaranteeing pension liability, improving employee health care and emphasizing local service opportunities.

– Will Seidel

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