Postmaster General Louis DeJoy has privately told associates in recent days that the hard part of his job at the U.S. Postal Service is just beginning.
Within his first month on the job, he issued orders that slowed mail service in the run-up to the 2020 election and faced a barrage of lawsuits that accused him and the agency of tanking postal delivery as tens of millions of voters prepared to mail in their ballots. Delays dragged into the holiday season; consumers widely reported problems paying bills by mail and sending and receiving Christmas packages.
But now, as DeJoy heads into his third year at the helm of the agency, the Postal Service is set to emerge from the pandemic with healthier finances and business prospects than most could have imagined. It’s buying new delivery trucks, shipping hundreds of millions of coronavirus test kits to American homes and launching new services to compete with Amazon and other private-sector package shippers. And, as DeJoy has come to realize, the bulk of his work and the 10-year transformation plan he unveiled in March 2021 — to stem annual losses, reconfigure the agency’s decrepit network and reorient its business strategy — is barely underway.
“We have to have a vision for the future, and that’s on me now,” DeJoy said in an interview with The Washington Post. “We’re losing $10 billion. We have ratty old trucks. How the hell are we going to [fix] that? Well, you need to have a strategy to get there. You need to take some freaking action.”
Here’s what you need to know about what’s next for your mail.