On Monday, members of Congress questioned DeJoy on the impact that those changes have on mail-in voting for the November election. But consumers are also experiencing delays with regards to mail-order prescriptions, Amazon deliveries, letters, and more.
Per CBS, over 14 million people are sent mail-order prescriptions through Medicare and private insurance, the Kaiser Family Foundation discovered in a recent study. In addition, around 330,000 veterans receive medications every day through the mail.
During the hearing, DeJoy defended his supervision of the USPS and alleged that Democrats have been circulating “misinformation” about his actions. While being questioned by the Democrats, DeJoy declined to commit to restoring mail-sorting machines that had recently been taken out of facilities, which ultimately had many speculating about delays in delivery.
The operational changes “have potential implications that extend beyond those for the election,” the Kaiser Family Foundation researchers said. “Mail service delays could affect a relatively large number of people in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
It’s conceivable that the amount of Americans who rely on the USPS for prescriptions is higher than Kaiser’s approximation of 14 million people since the study analyzed data from 2018, before the health crisis forced many consumers to begin online ordering. The AARP also highlighted that issue in an Aug. 17 letter to DeJoy, when requesting that he postpone operational changes.
“More than ever before, people are relying on the USPS to deliver their lifesaving prescription medications and other necessities, allowing them to remain safely at home,” the seniors’ advocacy group said.
On Aug. 18, DeJoy announced that he had decided to suspend ongoing initiatives at the USPS until after the election, as concerns mounted that his actions were an attempt to rig the election in Donald Trump’s favor, particularly since DeJoy is a huge Trump donor-turned-appointee.
However, just two days later, on Aug. 20, reports surfaced that USPS headquarters had instructed maintenance managers to not reinstall any of the mail sorting machines that had been disconnected.