Postal Services’ ‘Friday Night Massacre’: Postmaster General Louis DeJoy Overhauls Leadership & Services Ahead Of Election
The USPS implemented several new policies and shook up their management on Friday, prompting criticism and skepticism as the service faces allegations of intentionally delaying mail ahead of the 2020 general election, which will be conducted primarily through absentee ballots and mail-in voting.
The new Postmaster General, Trump appointee Louis DeJoy, has denied the allegations and insisted that any measures resulting in delays are part of cost-cutting initiatives designed to make the Post Service financially stable.
Friday’s memo detailed a slew of changes including a management-level hiring freeze, accepting of voluntary early retirement from non-union employees at the managerial level and the consolidation of operations by enlarging regions.
The USPS also announced a “new organizational structure” broken down into three units: Retail and delivery operations, logistics and processing operations, and commerce and business solutions, although it is unclear how this structure differs from the one currently in place.
The new divisions, however, will be run by longtime employees of the Post Office, a reassurance to some who worried DeJoy would favor other candidates.
For example, the head of delivery operations, Joshua Colin, has worked for the USPS since 2006, and that the new Vice President of retail, Angela Curtis, has worked there since 2011. And Mike Barber, the new head of processing and maintenance operations, has worked at the USPS for four decades.
Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon (D-Pennsylvania) dubbed the new policies a “Friday night massacre” by the Trump administration, though the USPS has confirmed no one was fired as a result of the changes.
“The announcement on Friday set forth a change to organizational structure only,” USPS spokesman David Partenheimer told Motherboard. “The announcement did not include any terminations or layoffs and very specifically stated that the changes did not initiate a reduction in force and there were no immediate impacts to USPS employees.”
Despite this, many are wary of any changes DeJoy implements due to some suspecting the prominent Trump donor of having ulterior motives.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) tweeted: “How many ways can the new Postmaster General sabotage the USPS? The [USPS Inspector General] should also investigate why Louis DeJoy is removing top officials who run day-to-day operations. It’s his job to get the mail delivered on time, not play partisan games.”