There are several things the United States Postal Service said are to blame for these major mail delays. One is staffing shortages due to the coronavirus pandemic. USPS says it’s bringing in extra resources, but learning a new route takes time. Also, weather. Winter snow and ice can slow mail carriers down.Later start times for letter carriers to cut down on overtime may also slow down service.
“Right now those staffing shortages are even more amplified,” said Chicago Letter Carrier Union President Mack Julion, referencing COVID-19. He said the union has been talking with USPS about staffing shortages for two years.
Friday, Julion said he asked for weekend help from districts outside of Chicago to triage the slowest city areas.
“To help us out to get some of this mail delivered,” he said. “We deserve better in Chicago, and we’re gonna get it.”
As postal carriers wait for more reinforcements from outside of the city that could come this weekend, Julion said more jobs could be posted next week.