State Watch

Postal Service blames ‘error’ after woman with coronavirus told she would no longer get mail

The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has apologized for a message apparently sent to a woman in Texas by mistake informing her that her mail service would be temporarily suspended due to her positive diagnosis for coronavirus.

A USPS communications specialist told local news affiliate KXAN that a Post-it note left in Pamela Bilbo’s mailbox explaining that her mail service would be suspended was “left in error” by her mail carrier, and that local officials had ensured that her mail service would resume immediately.

“The notice to the customer regarding their mail delivery was left in error,” Becky Hernandez told KXAN. “We apologize for any inconvenience that may have been experienced by our customer. As soon as local postal managers were made aware, they took steps to resolve the issue and have confirmed that mail delivery has resumed.”

Bilbo told the news channel that she feared her sister’s cancer medication, which normally arrives by mail, could have been disrupted had the suspension lasted longer. In an interview, Bilbo explained that post office workers told her over the phone that the order to suspend her service had been given by Bastrop police officials. Bastrop’s police chief denied this in a phone conversation with The Hill, noting that Bilbo lives in Smithville, outside of Bastrop’s jurisdiction.

“My mailbox is out on the street away from my house. I called Smithville Post office and they couldn’t tell me why except Bastrop police told them to stop my mail,” she told KXAN.

A request for comment on the USPS’s coordination with local law enforcement was not immediately returned.

Updated at 5:40 p.m. with a comment from the Bastrop police department.

Tags Coronavirus Postal system U.S. Postal Service USPS

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