You may have heard the saying that “neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night” will stop postal workers from delivering the mail. But what about COVID-19? Could the pandemic affect not only postal workers, but the entire USPS (United States Postal Service)?
The postal service existed in the United States a year before the Constitution was ratified [made official]. The USPS is not, however, funded by people who pay taxes to the government. The USPS gets it money from the sale of goods and services. When you buy stamps to send mail, you are funding the USPS. If a business pays the USPS to deliver packages, the business is funding the USPS, too. The USPS tries to keep prices low so that people can send their messages. They also cooperate with other postal services all over the world so that people can send messages and packages around the world.
During the time of the pandemic, many businesses have been closed. Businesses have been sending far fewer letters and packages, making USPS sales drop. People weren’t leaving their homes to buy stamps, either. Some experts believed that the postal service could run out of money in a matter of months. The US government voted to help some businesses. But, so far, the government has not directed more money to the USPS. The government, instead, says that the USPS should charge customers more money to mail packages.
Even as it struggles with funding, the USPS has become even more important than ever. People use the USPS, for example, to get their medications and household goods. When the government sent checks to help people during the pandemic, they sent them through the mail. Because of the pandemic, many states have decided that voters can vote by mail. This will keep people safe from spreading the virus.
What Do You Think? Why is the USPS important? What do you think should be done to help it? Could you help?
Photo Credit: steve bly/Alamy Stock Photo