The US Postal Service has long tried to minimize door to door delivery by requiring cluster mailboxes in new developments, and asking homeowners to place their mail receptacles on the street rather than at their door. Now the Joplin Globe reports that the USPS is taking advantage of the tornado that devastated Joplin last year in order to eliminate some door to door deliveries in the city. According to the paper, the worst hit parts of the city, where homes were completely destroyed, will be served by cluster mailboxes that city officials thought were temporary. The USPS hasn’t decided whether to extend the policy to less badly damaged areas, but it seems likely:
A change in the way mail is delivered in the hardest-hit area of Joplin’s tornado zone has sparked complaints by some residents and a grievance by union postal workers.
U.S. Postal Service authorities have decided to eliminate door or porch delivery in that part of the disaster zone where expedited debris removal, or EDR, took place. A decision is pending about mail practices in the rest of the disaster area — where houses were damaged but not destroyed and many have since been repaired.
City officials said they granted permission only for temporary cluster mailboxes to be installed, not a permanent change in delivery. But postal officials are unapologetic, saying the decision is theirs and not the city’s.