the daily news digest of the postal world since 1998


Mail theft hits Chilliwack again

Police in Chilliwack are once again turning their attention to thefts from community mailboxes.

Chilliwack RCMP received three reports of mail theft in Yarrow on Feb. 20. In each of the thefts the suspect or suspects gained access by prying open the doors and stealing the contents of each box.

The Upper Fraser Valley Regional Detachment of the RCMP, assisted by Canada Post, have been actively investigating a number of mail thefts in the area over the past several months.

Not unlike elsewhere in the Lower Mainland, mail theft continues to be a problem. Local Mounties say they have taken a proactive approach utilizing various investigative techniques, which includes a partnership with Canada Post investigators.

via Mail theft hits Chilliwack again – Chilliwack Times.


Now, India Post to sell biscuits, photo frames and mugs

CHENNAI: After introducing auxiliary mail services in an attempt to salvage its sinking fortunes, India Post will now sell biscuits, photo frames and mugs. After opening in Bengaluru and Mysore, Chennai’s first Post Shoppe will come up at the head post office on Anna Salai next month.

Postmaster general Merwin Alexander said the store would also sell pens, markers, gum, books and souvenirs with the India Post logo.

It will be located next to the multiple counters for postal and banking operations, so that customers can pick up stationery, and more.

Read more: Now, India Post to sell biscuits, photo frames and mugs – The Times of India.


Video: Mail theft on the rise in one Seattle neighborhood

SEATTLE, Wash. — There’s a troubling crime on the rise in King County, and residents in one North Seattle neighborhood have had enough.

"It makes you really uncomfortable," said Heather Campbell, who lives in Seattle’s Pinehurst neighborhood. "It’s one of those things that you don’t know how to protect against."

The postal inspector says mail thefts are on the rise, especially in Pinehurst. Just last week several neighbors received a notice from the Seattle Police Department that their mail had been found inside a stolen car in another county. The mail was returned to the its owners by police. Neighbor Lisa Lotus says a check and her W2 form was stolen out of her mailbox.

via Mail theft on the rise in one Seattle neighborhood | Local & Regional | Seattle News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News | KOMO News.


Maya Angelou to be featured on stamp

Maya Angelou — the beloved author, poet, actress and advocate for equality — will soon be honored with a stamp, the Postal Service announced Feb. 23.

“Maya Angelou inspired our nation through a life of advocacy and through her many contributions to the written and spoken word,” said PMG Megan Brennan. “Her wide-ranging achievements as a playwright, poet, memoirist, educator, and advocate for justice and equality enhanced our culture.”

Angelou’s works include “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings,” a 1969 memoir about her early years.

She later became an American studies professor at Wake Forest University in North Carolina and read one of her poems, “On the Pulse of the Morning,” at President Clinton’s 1993 inauguration.

Angelou, who died last year, received multiple awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2010.

USPS will preview the stamp and announce its release date later.


USPS mechanic to compete on Survivor

From USPS News Link:

A Postal Service employee will compete for $1 million on the new season of “Survivor.”

Portland, ME, Maintenance Mechanic Daniel Foley is one of 18 contestants on the CBS show’s 30th season, which will divide participants into three tribes: white collar, blue collar and no collar.

Foley says this will be one of the greatest psychological and sociological challenges he has ever faced, but he’s ready.

“As an Irishman, I have a glorious stubborn streak and I hate to lose,” Foley says in his “Survivor” bio. “As a technician, I have a very analytical mind so I’ll be great at puzzles.”

The season will premiere Wednesday, Feb. 25. Check local listings.


Kentucky: Postal service hopes to make ‘all’ deliveries Monday

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – Now that the city is getting back to normal after the President’s Day snowstorm, many in Louisville hope mail service will do the same.

A spokesperson told WHAS11 News Sunday they hope to be able to make all deliveries Monday.

This announcement comes shortly after our story aired about Fern Creek residents who have had little, to no mail delivery service since the snowstorm.

via Postal service hopes to make ‘all’ deliveries Monday.


Determined South Dakota customer calls foul on USPS and wins

NEWELL | A well-researched complaint by a curious Newell resident could save her and some of her neighbors from paying a fee for getting mail.

As a result of Anna Hermanson’s diligence, the U.S. Postal Service has backtracked on a policy that required some Newell residents without mailboxes to rent a post office box.

Meanwhile, the town’s mayor said last week that misinformation from the Postal Service had prompted some residents to install mailboxes in public rights of way, interfering with city snow removal and causing drainage problems.

When Hermanson moved to Newell last year, she received a $34 rental bill for a post office box.

“I had lived in other communities where we were not charged for a P.O. Box when USPS didn’t deliver mail to our homes,” Hermanson said. “I was a little surprised because I was never charged in other towns, including Edgemont and Colman, S.D. I asked the lady at the post office about it, and she said I had to pay for my post office box.”

Read more: Determined Newell resident calls foul on Postal Service and wins the argument.


What Postal Services Do People Value the Most?

The U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General (OIG) has conducted a nationally representative quantitative survey on the relative value of the different services provided as part of the universal service obligation (USO). This study is the first of its kind in the United States and was done in conjunction with the market research firm Gallup and with Professor Michael Bradley of George Washington University’s Department of Economics.

The study focused on four attributes of the USO: mode of delivery, access to postal services, frequency of delivery, and price.

The survey produced eight main findings:

  • Consumers and businesses place a high value on maintaining delivery to the door and/or curb rather than delivery to cluster boxes or parcel lockers. This is especially true for parcels and even more so for consumers that currently receive mail via cluster box.
  • Both consumers and businesses place value on human interaction with a Postal Service employee at a post office rather than alternative access options such as postal counters in non-postal retail stores and self-service kiosks. However, respondents seemed to find more limited hours of operation acceptable.
  • Overall, respondents are indifferent to receiving Saturday delivery of letters, but consumers still place some value on the Saturday delivery of parcels. Furthermore, both consumers and businesses value not moving to 3-day a week delivery.
  • Both consumers and businesses value lower prices. In other words, they may be willing to accept lower levels of service to keep prices from rising sharply.
  • The vast majority of respondents believe it is important or very important that the Postal Service be obligated to deliver to every address in the country.
  • The majority of respondents believe a uniform First-Class Mail rate is important or very important.
  • There remains a strong need for postal services for both consumers and businesses.
  • At this time, there is not much acceptance of the Postal Service using digital alternatives to deliver the mail, such as the Postal Service scanning mail and sending it via e-mail.

What Postal Services Do People Value the Most? | Office of Inspector General.


Video: Frustrated customers in Kentucky ask: “Where’s our mail?”

Lexington, Ky, (WTVQ) — If you had trouble driving this week, so did mail carriers.

ABC 36 news received emails and phone calls this week from people asking, "Where’s our mail?" ABC 36 found out some people not only want their mail, they need it.It’s been a long week for everyone, especially for the U.S. Postal Service.

There are many angry customers out there wondering where their mail is. For others, mail is more than just bills and flyers.

"We do have medicine that is delivered," says Rebecca Woosley.

"It’s an important package, some medical items," says frustrated customer.

For Woosley, she’s been checking her mailbox all week. She says the last time she received mail was Saturday.

Read more: Frustrated customers: "Where's our mail?" – WTVQ.


Former Ohio Letter Carrier Gets Probation For Theft

uspsoigWCBE in Columbus Ohio reports that former letter carrier Arlie Ruff has been sentenced to three years probation for mail theft. Ruff was a letter carrier from 1997 to 2009, and pled guilty to the thefts last fall. He inadvertently helped investigators track him down when he made the mistake of using his Kroger loyalty card on purchases made with credit cards he had stolen.

via Former USPS Carrier Gets Probation For Theft | WCBE 90.5 FM.