The US Postal Service says it will stop taking letter collection boxes off streets in Western states following accusations the removals would limit mail-in ballots for the upcoming election.
As The Wow Report and others posted Friday, the USPS has started reducing post office operating hours across several states and removing letter collection boxes, according to union officials.
In a statement Friday night, Rod Spurgeon, a USPS spokesperson for the service’s the Western region, told CNN that they will stop the removal of letter collection boxes in 16 states and parts of two others until after the election.
According to Spurgeon, that means the post Office will stop collecting the letter collection boxes only in: Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Idaho, Montana, South Dakota, North Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, Kansas, Iowa, Alaska, Nebraska and small parts of Wisconsin and Missouri.
Kim Frum — a spokeswoman for USPS based at headquarters — could not say if the freeze would go into effect across the country and would not comment on the freeze in the Western region.
Officials say that in the last week the USPS has removed letter collection boxes in at least four states: New York, Oregon, Montana and Indiana.
Sen. Jon Tester, a Montana Democrat, asked Postmaster DeJoy for answers. Tester said Montanans had told his office that USPS collections boxes
“may have been removed from Bozeman and Lewistown and that there may be plans to remove boxes from Billings.”
Tester asked for the head of the USPS to confirm the removal of collection boxes, the rationale for the move and what has been communicated to the public on the matter.
Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley, promised to make sure ballots are delivered on time. Merkley said on Twitter,
“I can’t believe Trump is making it harder to send mail & vote in November. We’re going to fight like hell to make sure postal workers & letter carriers can deliver every ballot!”
The USPS has also begun notifying postal workers in at least three states — West Virginia, Florida and Missouri — that they will start to reduce their retail operating hours, according to union officials.