Jacksonville U.S. Postal Service workers rally against Trump's proposal to privatize

On Monday, postal workers across the country, including right here in Jacksonville, took to the streets to protest President Trump’s proposal to privatize the U.S. Postal Service.

Action News Jax's Courtney Cole spoke to a group of local postal workers who explained why privatization could hurt postal employees and customers.

Dozens of postal workers, including Kevin Shumake, spent part of their Columbus Day holiday rallying outside the post office on Beach Boulevard.

“We go out and deliver mail every day, and we love doing it,” Shumake said. He told Action News Jax he’s been a USPS employee for the last 19 years.

The Trump administration wants to privatize the postal service to give a "financially burdened agency greater flexibility," the administration said.

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Bob Henning, with the National Association of Letter Carriers, worries what it could mean for jobs and customer service.

"In areas, say rural areas, like we have here in the city of Jacksonville, right now, we’re doing the last mile of delivery for UPS and FedEx,  where it’s not profitable for them to go in,” said Henning.

On Sept. 18, U.S. Sen. Claire McCaskill introduced a resolution insuring the U.S. Postal Service will remain an independent agency of the federal government.

So far, 42 senators have signed the resolution, but none of them are from Florida or Georgia.

Cole spoke to some local USPS customers to find out what they think about the idea.

A woman who did not give her name to Action News Jax said, "I would not want to see the U.S. mail governed by anyone other than who it is right now."

"It wouldn't work, in my book. It’s been around for so long,” said Alan Yardley.

Yardley told Action News Jax he’s also concerned about losing access to his post office box if USPS becomes privatized.

“Every now and then, my mail gets mixed up with two other streets. That’s the reason I got the PO box.”

The idea to privatize USPS is a part of President Trump’s bigger plan to reorganize the federal government.

The president created a task force in April to study the U.S. Postal Service and its business model.

The task force was set to deliver a report in August, but it has not yet been released.

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