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Customers will ultimately decide if DeJoy’s changes to USPS are prudent

While other issues seem to be dominating the national news and political landscapes, it is imperative that Americans also remain aware of other issues and developments of importance that might affect their lives to varying degrees.

We want to focus on one of those issues in this editorial — the intentional slowing of the U.S. Postal Service.

The U.S. Postal Service announced on April 18 that it would slow delivery times for nearly a third of all first-class packages as part of its efforts to lower costs and reduce its reliance on air transportation.

According to the postal service, the move will add up to one or two days for some packages traveling long distances — not welcome news to those postal customers who long have been critical about “snail mail.”

Postmaster General Louis DeJoy contends that the longer delivery times are part of a plan to reduce more than $160 billion in projected losses over the next decade.

But chances are that his savings will not reach what he is anticipating through the use of more trains and trucks to transport parcels instead of relying on an air network that he labels more costly and hindered by reliability issues.

The jury — meaning postal customers — will not need a year to return a “verdict” on the correctness of DeJoy’s judgment. If customers turn to UPS, FedEx or other services to get their packages to their destinations more quickly, it will be the package carriers’ financial gain and USPS’ revenue loss.

How long that situation might be sustainable for USPS is anyone’s guess, but it should be an important point of contemplation.

As many businesses and services already can attest, once customers stray, it sometimes is difficult to get them to return.

While national news media are busy chronicling other issues, including protests on both sides of the abortion issue, there likely will be fewer, if any, actual postal protests, but customers will deliver their messages nonetheless — by way of how often they rely on the post office.

Either way, the customers will make sure their voice is heard. And neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night will keep that message from being delivered.

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