Lowey Addresses Ongoing Mail Crisis in USPS Westchester District
WHITE PLAINS, NY – Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-NY17/Rockland-Westchester) was today joined by Lower Hudson Valley elected officials and residents to demand long-term solutions to the systemic issues plaguing the post office branches in Westchester and Rockland counties, including lost checks, missing bills, and undelivered medications.
Joining Congresswoman Lowey were Village of Ossining Mayor Victoria Gearity; Greenburgh Town Supervisor Paul Feiner; Cynthia Ferguson, an Ossining resident who has been subjected to significant breaks in delivery and late and missing mail, including bills; and Els van den Bosch, a Port Chester resident who had to pay a replacement fee for her green card that was lost in the mail.
“When the Postal Service is not working efficiently, families and businesses can face serious consequences,” said Congresswoman Lowey. “Unfortunately, that’s the case for too many area residents. During the past five months, I’ve received dozens of postal service complaints which indicate a wide range of structural problems. The shortcomings in our local postal service are not merely inconveniences; they are threatening the livelihood and well-being of some of our highest need constituents. It is unacceptable that New Yorkers would have to worry about missing a bill, not receiving a payment, or not having access to important documents or medication they need. I am committed to working with the community and the entire Postal Service team to find long-term solutions and rebuild trust in an institution that plays a pivotal role in this nation.”
“Delivery failures directly impact the lives of people in our community,” said Mayor Gearity. “It is troubling that even after months of attempts, the postal service our residents rely on is still not fixed. We are grateful to Congresswoman Lowey for her efforts to address this ongoing issue.”
“I am very pleased that Congresswoman Lowey is giving this her priority attention,” said Supervisor Feiner. “The lack of reliable and dependable mail service is a crisis for our residents. I have received hundreds of complaints from residents and many of these complaints are very serious. Not receiving medication. Not getting checks they expect or bills. Mail being sent to the wrong addresses. No mail deliveries for days at a time. We need to find a solution to the problem. I hope that the Postmaster General of the United States will consider our invitation to visit Westchester, to meet with postal customers and local postal employees. We need results.”
At the press conference, Congresswoman Lowey described the pervasiveness of mail service problems in Rockland and Westchester which affect communities throughout the 17th Congressional district, and highlighted a number of cases her office has received in recent months, including:
- A constituent from White Plains, who relies on the mail for her heart medication, only received her medication when her husband personally waited for the carrier and asked him to check a spot in the delivery vehicle the carrier had overlooked.
- A constituent from Nyack had her address changed without her consent. A credit card was opened in her name, and she was the victim of identity theft.
- A constituent from White Plains had to fight multiple battles because his nebulizer medication was lost in the mail. He and other seniors in his building consistently face missing mail and poor service.
Congresswoman Lowey has been in frequent contact with USPS to resolve issues facing residents and to put pressure on the postal service to address these ongoing failures. In September 2017, Lowey met with United States Postal Service Deputy Postmaster General Ron Stroman to discuss the postal issues in Westchester and Rockland, bringing to his attention dozens of specific cases and demanding action. At the meeting, Lowey asked for a report detailing the steps the Post Office has taken to fix these issues, and later sent a letter to Stroman to follow up on the report, which was vague and did not include a detailed plan. Since then, the Postal Office has yet to address every case brought to their attention by Lowey.
This week, Lowey sent a letter to Stroman describing the “wide range of structural issues” that continue to plague local mail delivery and urging him to use his upcoming briefing session in White Plains not just as an opportunity to hear concerns, but as a platform “to announce solutions to the challenges we have repeatedly brought to your attention over the past five months.”
Lowey will continue to bring cases directly to the Post Office officials in Washington, because the Westchester District Postal Service does not have an efficient way to work directly with Lower Hudson Valley residents.