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USPS transfers clerk to Skagway, Senator celebrates

You can tell that it’s (still) silly season in Washington when a US Senator issues a press release to announce that a postal clerk has been transferred from Juneau to Skagway. The Senator points out, however, that this is not just any clerk- this is a clerk who “understands Alaska”.

We don’t know what that means, exactly, but we wish the unnamed clerk good luck in turning around the “intolerable” conditions at the Skagway PO! No pressure!

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski today was informed by the United States Postal Service that a new staff member has been hired for the Skagway Post Office. She welcomed the news, coming less than two months since she visited Skagway and encouraged Skagwegians to share their stories and concerns about the Postal Service to seek reinforcements for the then under-staffed facility.

“The situation in Skagway was unacceptable for all parties involved, and this is the first step in getting the community the kind of postal service they can count on,” said Murkowski.  “This is a victory for everyone who wrote in and shared their stories, and I thank them for taking the time to pitch in.  I also thank the individuals at the USPS Alaska District Office and at Headquarters here in Washington, D.C. for the way they responded.”

Senator Murkowski visited Skagway on May 31st and found the postal situation in the community “intolerable.” The mail there is the only method for many residents to receive vital deliveries like medication, and their health needs were being threatened.  Additionally, some Skagwegians reported their mail was not being delivered for as many as five days in a row; residents would get weeks’ worth of magazines and bills in one big, belated batch, and that the post office was woefully understaffed with three unfilled job openings.

The United States Post Office reports that the new staff person is moving from Juneau to Skagway, and understands Alaska.  USPS also reports that they are working through applications for the other unfilled, temporary positions.