LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - President Donald Trump claimed this week he's not supporting relief funding for the U.S. Postal Service, which some have asked for to process an increase in mail-in ballots during the pandemic.
That decision announced just days after the new Post Master General claimed operational changes, a sting of financial hits and COVID-19 are the reasons behind delays across the country.
In Louisville, some are concerned a lack of USPS funding could hurt them both when it comes to voting and everyday life.
“The postal service must be fully funded,” said Tyler Lamon, who lives in Louisville. “It’s very straight forward.”
Lamon, a member of the Democratic Socialists of America - Louisville Chapter, said USPS is a critical public service, adding privatizing it or not funding it properly could hamper democracy.
"The postal service is the logistical fabric of our country," Lamon said. "It's very, very important. We're really going to miss it if its gone."
One concern Lamon cites is interruptions in service or delays as the November election nears, and some will be depending on USPS to vote.
Kentucky postal leaders released this statement when asked if the Louisville area is currently seeing delays:
"We are flexing our available resources to match the workload created by the impacts of the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and some other staffing issues. We appreciate the patience of our customers and the efforts of employees as conditions change on a day-to-day basis. USPS continues to hire based on local need while also being committed to our expanded employee leave policy to help employees affected by the pandemic. We are proud of our workforce for the essential role they are playing for the customers they serve.
The United States Postal Service is developing a business plan to ensure that we will be financially stable and able to continue to provide dependable, affordable, safe and secure delivery of mail and packages to all Americans as a vital part of the nation’s critical infrastructure. The plan will focus on the Postal Service’s strengths to maximize our prospects for long-term success.”
Louisville resident Benny Butler said he wants to see mail-in voting for all with enough time to navigate any postal delays ahead of the election.
Kentucky’s governor and secretary of state on Friday announced widespread absentee voting will happen in Kentucky.
“I know a lot of my ancestors died for me to have that right, and I want to make sure that I uphold that,” Butler said.
Butler added that outside of voting, a public mail service is important for other reasons too. So, the post office should get the funds it needs.
"Think about the other people that are involved there, even our veterans who receive their medications through the mail," Butler said. "All the other seniors that rely on the mail. Even the people in the rural areas, they rely on the mail."
According to USPS, customers experiencing mail delivery issues can connect with customer service representatives by calling 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777).