New Chicago postmaster defends changes to mail delivery

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chicago's new USPS postmaster is defending changes he's made to the city's mail delivery service as he answers questions about ongoing issues with mail.

Englewood resident Samon Richardson waited three days to get her daughter's birthday decorations. The celebration was yesterday.

"They said they delivered, but I waited all day and it didn't come," she said.

Chicago's postmaster Eddie Morgan Jr. was asked to testify in a Friday congressional hearing on USPS. He told the subcommittee members about programs and plans to improve service, and put a lot of emphasis on staff not showing up to work for reasons including violence in the city.

But some members pushed back on blaming violence for mail delays. Richardson said she doesn't buy it either, and said he's just spreading stereotypes.

Teamsters Local 786's office went a month without mail over the summer, jeopardizing members' health benefits. Their off on the Near West Side was given a different excuse.

"They were afraid of COVID, they didn't want to work because they were afraid of COVID, which made zero sense to us because they were literally delivering to the building a stone's throw away from us," said Jeffrey Hoff, director of employee benefits.

After Friday's hearing, members of the subcommittee said they have little patience with excuses, and demand to see a plan from the Chicago postmaster, all as USPS heads into its busiest time of year.

"We're gonna be watching to make sure that the postal service is funded, that people have enough employees to do the job they say they're gonna do," said U.S. Rep. Danny Davis.
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