Hawley, Gillibrand Announce Bipartisan Legislation to Protect Postal Workers from Rising Crime

Monday, May 20, 2024

U.S. Senators Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) introduced the bipartisan Protect Our Letter Carriers Act to protect postal workers from an alarming uptick in violent assaults committed against them and modernize postal collection boxes to crack down on mail theft. 

“Postal carriers work day in and day out to fulfill critical needs, like package deliveries, that Americans often take for granted. The recent uptick in violent assaults against these men and women is unacceptable and inexcusable. Congress should protect our postal workers on the job, and that starts by increasing enforcement of the law for crimes committed against them,” said Senator Hawley.

“Amid a concerning uptick in postal crime, I’m proud to be introducing this critical bipartisan legislation to protect our mail and those who deliver it,” said Senator Gillibrand. “This bill will make long-overdue upgrades to mailboxes around the country to safeguard against the theft of Americans’ sensitive information. It will also strengthen penalties for assaulting a postal worker, helping ensure that the hard-working men and women who deliver our mail are not put in harm’s way because of their jobs. I look forward to getting this bill passed.”

The Protect Our Letter Carriers Act would:

  • Empower the Attorney General to vigorously prosecute any case of assault against a postal worker.
  • Direct the Attorney General to appoint an assistant U.S. attorney in each judiciary district to oversee the investigation and prosecution of alleged postal crimes.
  • Require the U.S. Sentencing Commission to amend its guidelines, ensuring that the assault or robbery of a postal worker is prosecuted in the same manner as the assault or robbery of a law enforcement officer.
  • Authorize $7 billion over five years to install high security collection boxes and to replace older versions of the universal mailbox key with an electronic version.

Senator Hawley recently pressed the Postmaster General and United States Postal Service CEO for answers on a string of Missouri postal issues, including the delayed rebuilding of the Baring, Mo. Post Office and ongoing mail and delivery delays in the greater St. Louis, Mo. and Kansas City, Mo. regions.

Click here for full text of the Protect Our Letter Carriers Act.