WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC) yesterday met with the Chief Postal Inspector for the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Gary Barksdale, to discuss mail theft in the District of Columbia and across the country.
“Mail theft, particularly of checks, has been increasing in the District and throughout the country recently,” Norton said. “I appreciate Chief Barksdale’s willingness to meet with me today to discuss steps the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is taking to address the problem, which include additional security technology to be rolled out in the D.C. area in the next 60 days, ongoing meetings with federal and local officials to encourage more prosecutions of mail theft cases, and more secure vehicles, which are currently in the design phase. While these efforts are likely to reduce mail theft, one of the most effective ways we can protect mail, postal property, and postal employees is to clarify the authority of U.S. Postal Police Officers (PPOs). I have introduced a bill that would make it clear that PPOs have the authority to protect mail, postal property, and postal employees wherever they are located.”
This year, Norton has taken several steps to respond to mail theft. She introduced a bill that would clarify the authority of PPOs to protect mail, postal property, and postal employees. She also sent a letter to USPS about the increase in mail theft, to which USPS responded.