Guess who just celebrated an anniversary? The Postal Service. Yesterday marked 245 years since Congress created the United States Post Office Department. So, it seems fitting that today is the day we wrap up our series on the value of the Postal Service. This week’s blog focuses on the economic value the Postal Service adds to our country.
While not its primary objective, the Postal Service is a large employer of middle-class workers, providing jobs to over 600,000 people across the country in every state and most local communities. In addition, a recent study by Pew found that the postal workforce is more racially and ethnically diverse than the overall U.S. labor force, with over 40 percent of the postal workforce composed of minorities. Furthermore, USPS leads as an employer of women and of veterans.
The Postal Service also boosts local and regional economies across the nation by outsourcing highway transportation. It maintains 12,500 individual transportation contracts worth about $4.2 billion.
In addition, USPS serves as a foundation for America’s small businesses. A recent paper by the OIG found that the Postal Service is the carrier of choice for microbusinesses — businesses with fewer than 10 employees. Supporting these entities benefits the country as a whole, as microbusinesses represent 75 percent of the employers nationwide.
These are just some ways the Postal Service benefits the nation’s economy — can you think of others?