United States Postal Essay

Submitted By y5lough
Words: 669
Pages: 3

* Company Background

The United States Postal Service (USPS) is an independent agency of the United States federal government and legally responsible for providing postal service to every American in any location within the United States. The USPS is one of only a few organizations who are authorized by the United States Constitution. The USPS can be dated back to 1775. In 1971 the Postal Reorganization Act made it what it is today. Today the USPS has roughly 570,000 employees, operates roughly 260,000 vehicles, and delivers approximately 660 billion pieces of mail a year (Wikipedia, 2013). In 1971 after a postal strike, the American Postal Workers Union (APWU) was established to help protect worker’s rights and gave them collective bargaining rights, a process of negotiations aimed at reaching agreements to help regulate working conditions. At the postal service this is a three step phase; negotiations, mediations, and interest arbitration. Currently, due to decrease in standard mail delivery, mostly due to ease of the internet, the postal service is facing dire times and being forced to look at alternative ways of doing business without failing to meet their legal obligations. One such option is to close sites. The APWU is currently fighting to stop the closure of postal offices. Due to federal laws, the postal service finds themselves with their hands tied as it looks for possible solutions. I will discuss what events have led to the USPS situation, challenges and laws preventing progress, and finally discuss solutions to help the USPS minimize litigation. Prior to 1971 was handled by the Post Office Department, a cabinet department in the federal government. After the 1971 Postal Reorganization Act, the USPS ran like a business and relies on revenue from postage and does not rely on tax payer’s money. Two main factors have led to an estimated $6B annual loss in revenue. First, in 2006 Congress passed the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, which mandated $5.5 billion per year be paid into an account to pre-fund retiree health-care 75 years into the future (Wikipedia; 2013) Secondly, the postal service has seen a drastic decline in people using the mail; People have found the internet a simple, quicker way to pay their bills as well as to communicate. Decline in usage means decline in revenue. Due to decline in revenue, the USPS must find alternative ways to make money and find ways to cut costs. One option is to cut Saturday service and close geographically isolated offices. The only problem, Federal Laws state the USPS must provide “All American’s postal services 6 days a week regardless of their geographical location. Another option was to lay off…