WASHINGTON, DC – As widespread reports of United States Postal Service (USPS) delays continue to impact millions of Americans, U.S. Senators Patty Murray (D-WA), the Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP), and Maria Cantwell (D-WA), the Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, joined 34 of their Senate colleagues in sending a letter to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy calling on him to immediately reverse all operational and organizational changes that have resulted in delays of critical medications to Americans.
“The Postal Service is an essential public institution that must uphold its duty to serve every community. Your recently implemented changes pose an unacceptable threat and continue to have a devastating effect on communities that rely on consistent access to medication through the mail. We have received numerous reports from seniors about delays in receiving their prescriptions through the mail, leaving some without life-sustaining medication for days. Others have been forced to obtain emergency prescriptions from their doctors and pay out-of-pocket for medication because their original prescriptions covered by insurance never arrived,” the senators wrote.
“We call on you to immediately reverse all operational and organizational changes that have resulted in life-threatening delays of critical medications to Americans,” the senators continued. “Right now, the Postal Service is failing to meet the needs of many Americans and adhere to its mission of “prompt, reliable, and efficient services to patrons in all areas.” As we continue to fight this pandemic, the Postal Service is integral to keeping millions of Americans safe, especially seniors, people with chronic conditions, and people with disabilities.”
Senators Murray and Cantwell have been vocal in their support for the U.S. Postal Service and their opposition to Postmaster General DeJoy’s changes to mail services. Last month, the senators sent a letter to Postmaster DeJoy demanding answers about the changes in mail delivery that caused significant delays, as well as calling on DeJoy to testify before Congress about the delays. Also in August, Murray and Cantwell joined the entire Senate Democratic caucus in calling on the USPS to fix mail delays and avoid increasing costs for election mail as millions of Americans plan to vote by mail this fall. In July, Cantwell and Murray also joined their colleagues to introduce a resolution highlighting the importance of USPS and calling for increased funding to help the agency continue to perform its essential work amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to Senators Murray and Cantwell, the letter to DeJoy was also signed by U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Tom Carper (D-DE), Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Tom Udall (D-NM), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Mark Warner (D-VA), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Tina Smith (D-MN), Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Chris Coons (D-DE), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Ed Markey (D-MA), Ben Cardin (D-MD), Jack Reed (D-RI), Marin Heinrich (D-NM), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Kamala Harris (D-CA).
The full text of the letter is available HERE.