The U.S. Postal Service is losing a whopping 59% of its early tenure employees per year, according to a new report, which employees say is creating a staffing crisis and souring morale at many locations around the country.
Postal employees across the country staged protests outside their facilities in recent days, saying poor treatment of staff and a lack of priority on hiring has led to toxic work environments. Particularly within post offices and other forward-facing positions, they said, staffing shortfalls have caused longer wait times and otherwise reduced service for customers.
Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has made it a priority to decrease USPS’ reliance on non-career employees and to improve working conditions for those who remain. DeJoy has found some success in his efforts, converting more than 125,000 such workers into career roles since October 2020. Most new field employees hired to USPS begin in a “non-career” status, meaning they earn less generous benefits and often work irregular schedules. Currently, about 18% of the USPS workforce is non-career.