Yesterday the American Postal Workers Union held protests in 27 states. The union’s gripe is the opening of postal counters in Staples locations that are staffed with Staples employees instead of uniformed official postal employees. The union is concerned about Staples’ decision because (Staff and News Services, The Kansas City Star, “Postal Workers to Protest Today” April 24, 2014, p. A11):
“the union says that could lead to layoffs and the closing of post offices. In a statement, the union said postal workers ‘have taken an oath to protect the sanctity of the mail,” unlike poorly trained retail workers.”
I find the nature and the timing of this statement rather humorous. In recent years, post office troubles have escalated severely. The system’s sustainability is questionable. Personally, I have experienced more customer service and mail-delivery problems in the past four years than in the prior four decades. Therefore, when I learn of this oath to protect the sanctity of the mail, I can only shake my head.
While I am the first to agree that no organization is perfect, I also affirm with many that for the post office, the customer experience has seriously degraded. I remain uncertain whether it will be a winnable war, yet I am hoping for some measure of recovery so that I will receive my mail. Then perhaps we will at least preserve the sanctity of the customer experience.