We received the following letter at noon today from Tara Rountree, the Deputy Chief of Staff for Congressman Donald McEachin. In it, you’ll find an update regarding the postal issues that have been plaguing Church Hill and the overall East End.
Here is the content of the letter:
Residents of Church Hill:
Thanks to all of you who braved a bitterly cold morning to join post office representatives and me at a town hall on January 12, 2019 to discuss the postal delivery concerns in our community. My staff continues to work closely with personnel from the United States Postal Service to resolve issues brought to our attention. To ensure my office continues to receive timely updates from the Postal Service, my office has a weekly call with the Postal Service to follow up and monitor any new developments.
For those of you who filled out comment cards at the town hall with specific postal delivery issues, you should have already heard back from the Postal Service, or should be hearing back very soon. Please let my office know if you do not hear back from the Postal Service, or if the situation does not improve.
For anyone who did not fill out a comment card with specific concerns, my staff is here to help with persistent problems. Elizabeth Hardin is our postal caseworker and she can be reached at 804-486-1840.
As part of our ongoing communication with senior Postal Service personnel, I requested an update about their progress in resolving the problems and issues our community has been experiencing. I have included that update below, from Fran Kipper, Communications Coordinator for the Richmond Regional Post Office.
As I have said, mail needs to be delivered accurately and expeditiously. I am very disappointed that problems persist, and that too many of you are struggling to receive your mail in a timely and appropriate fashion. The stories I heard at our January town hall and the recent news stories that have surfaced have only heightened my concerns. Please know that I will continue to work diligently to address these problems. My office will continue to work closely with local Postal Service personnel, and I will reach out to the United States Postal Service Postmaster General again to reiterate my serious concerns.
My office is here to help, so please do not hesitate to contact us.
Congressman Donald McEachin
TLDR; Congressman McEachin has weekly call with Postal Service. If you filled out a comment card with a specific issue, you should have heard back already. If not, please call Elizabeth Hardin at 804-486-1840. Problems still persist but he commits to figuring it out with local Post Service Personnel.
Here’s an update from “Fran Kipper” representing the USPS.
- Employees and carriers have been “spoken to” in regards to delivering mail only to address listed
- For problems with specific issues in the 23231 or 23223 zip codes, citizens may directly call 804-226-2759 or 804-226-1588 and speak to Ms. Baker-Taylor, Ms. Conway or Ms. Watts for assistance.
- As of February 1, the newest African American stamp featuring the late Gregory Hines will be available for purchase.
Update from Ms. Kipper (USPS) – removing sections that do not apply to the East End.
Postal managers throughout the district have received the comment cards from the January 12 town hall, as has Postmaster Thekkekara. They are in the process of addressing the concerns with postal staff and reaching out to the individual where they have contact information. Per Communications Coordinator Fran Kipper, managers throughout the district have been speaking with their employees and carriers on proper mail delivery practices and to delivering mail only to the address listed.
Parcels that fit inside mail boxes are to be placed inside the box. Parcels that do not fit are to be placed on porches.
For parcels not placed in appropriate place, citizens are urged to check tracking number and take a photo if possible determine if was sent via USPS or another carrier.
For those unable to walk to mailbox, a hardship request with verification from physician may be submitted for consideration to allow for delivery to their door. This must be updated and renewed yearly.
The postal service must have a complete address to fully address a problem.
For problems with specific issues in the 23231 or 23223 zip codes, citizens may directly call 804-226-2759 or 804-226-1588 and speak to Ms. Baker-Taylor, Ms. Conway or Ms. Watts for assistance.
Regarding forwarding of mail- If the recipient is deceased, mail may be returned to sender and marked as “deceased”
If receiving mail not belonging to you- recipient can bundle with note and leave in their outgoing mail or can drop it in the blue collection box on 25th St.
Changes of address can be adjusted by name. When completing a Change of Address request, be sure to note on the form if it is for an individual or a business.
If a mailbox is overflowing and cannot accept more, carriers are instructed to bring back mail to station with slip stating “overflow”. Mail will be sent out daily to be placed in box if there is room.
Those concerned with possibly missing mail are encouraged to enroll in the USPS Informed Delivery service to see what mail has been sent to them.
Regarding the concern of lack of African American stamps for sale at the East End station, the station was prohibited from ordering additional stamps until January 28th. As of February 1, the newest African American stamp featuring the late Gregory Hines will be available for purchase.
Suspected crime and mail theft- if something does not look right, do not engage and call 911!