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Post Office Closure Would Be Devastating

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If you walk past the Civic Center post office today at the corner of Hyde and Golden Gate, you can see a gorgeous new mural sings out at passerbyers. However, the many customers of that same post office will not be singing anytime soon.
The United States Post Office is planning to close several post offices around the city, but only in the poorest neighborhoods. These include a closure of the Bayview office, Visitation Valley, and the most problematic for homeless people, 101 Hyde Street. Nationwide, the US Post Office is planning on closing 3,700 of the 32,000 retail post offices they operate.
The post office at 101 Hyde is a general delivery post office and does not offer full postal services. However, hundreds of people either have post office boxes there or receive their mail sent care of general delivery. One of the many struggles destitute people have is living without a permanent address. General delivery is the go-to solutions for poor people who are unable to afford expensive San Francisco rents. Many people in the neighborhood utilize this service, since poor folks are forced to move around a lot. In addition, the thousands living in residential hotels have notoriously unreliable mail service. Often they have no secure mailbox, and rely on whoever is at the front desk to give it to them. The mail is frequently left out for anyone to grab.
Mail service is critical and is one of those governmental services that the population actually enjoys. The price of stamps pays for the entire budget – the post office does not receive subsidies, so the enterprise is self-sufficient. Privatizers, jealous that a government entity actually does a good job, have worked hard to change that. They have even required the United States Post Office to pre-pay retirement funds 75 years in advance, an unheard of exercise not required of any other federal agencies.
Closing post offices is not going to solve the post office’s financial problems. Closing 101 Hyde is unfathomable…there is no real alternative for folks.
You can take action by sending a letter to the Postmaster General—for just 44 cents. A real bargain.

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Author: Street Sheet Editor

The STREET SHEET is the oldest continuously published street news paper in the United States. Organizationally, it is the public education and outreach tool of the Coalition on Homelessness. Every month, the STREET SHEET reaches 32,000 readers through over 200 homeless or low-income vendors. Our vendors are charged nothing for the papers they receive, and keep all money they earn through STREET SHEET distribution.

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