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Discourteous Postal Workers: When is it Time to File a Complaint?

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It’s not uncommon to hear of the disgruntled postal employee who becomes mean to postal customers. From just being plain rude to openly hostile, these postal workers can really ruin a customer’s day. If you are the client in these situations and you feel that you did not do anything to deserve such dire treatment then you might be thinking of filing a complaint against that mean postal worker.

But before you go ahead and talk to the postmaster of that facility or lodge your complaint online, consider the fact that postal workers can sometimes have rough days. Now this doesn’t give them a right to be discourteous but attending to customers every day, answering the same questions and being stuck in the same grind for hours can take a toll on someone. Granted, the USPS should hire postal clerks who love their jobs but we all have bad days sometimes and while we do our best to keep our home stresses separate from those we experience in the workplace, we are not always successful.

If you are a regular post office goer and notice that a certain clerk is having an off-day but is still trying to do his job the best way he can and has not done something extreme, then perhaps it’s time to let the postal worker’s lapse pass. You should not also mistake a worker’s “coldness” for discourtesy. When there is a long line outside the window, postal employees just want to do their job as quickly and accurately as they can so that the clients need not stand too long outside. If they forget to smile or fail to return your cheery “good morning,” don’t be too offended by it.

But if a particular postal worker has harassed or given you consistently poor service every time you go to the post office then you might have a basis for filing a complaint. If you feel that your rights are being trampled upon or that your life is threatened by an erring postal employee, you should report him or her immediately to the postmaster or his or her supervisor. Do it right away so that the incident is still fresh and the postmaster can process the incident immediately with his subordinate.

When you do complain, be as professional and cool about it as much as possible. Shouting and “going postal” yourself won’t get you anywhere. Focus on the employee’s acts and not on his person (e.g. that he or she has body odor or his ethnic origin). The more objective and reasonable you are, the more you will likely get the supervisor and even the postal employee himself to listen to you.

t is true that postal workers basically have their jobs secured for life because they are unionized. But this does not mean that it’s useless to complain. Just make sure that you are airing a legitimate grievance.


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