You hear about it a lot in the news lately — so many businesses having trouble fully staffing their workplaces to keep up with customer demand. While this is a fairly recent problem, it’s been an ongoing one for the U.S. Postal Service throughout the pandemic.

In order to ensure workers, including federal employees, weren’t forced to choose between their paychecks and their health, Congress passed legislation that provided special types of leave. One was for emergency health care, and the other allowed employees to take care of children in response to closures of schools and childcare facilities.

Postal employees were eligible to use these new types of leave. So how well did the Postal Service do at managing them? Finding that out was the objective of one of our recently released audit reports. We determined the Postal Service proactively took several quick, decisive actions, including creating a centralized website with instructions and guidance and also working with unions to provide additional paid leave for non-career employees.

We did, however, find a few areas upon which USPS could improve. For example, 96 percent of randomly sampled employees who exceeded the leave threshold lacked completed documentation to support their leave. The Postal Service also did not effectively monitor leave limits and had to go back in and make accounting adjustments for those who used more special leave than the law allowed.

So, how did your employer do at managing leave and staffing during the pandemic?

Comments (6)

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  • anon

    Regarding the topic of actual sick leave taken during the pandemic, this brings to mind what is currently happening at the USPS Health and Resource Management Office (1 Post Office Drive, San Antonio, TX). The employees who work in that office are deliberately refusing to comply with Code of Federal Regulations, Title 20, Employees Benefits. They refuse to process, and submit the appropriate OWCP Claim forms to DFEC/OWCP during the COVID-19 pandemic in a timely manner. On March 11,2021, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 thus allowing federal employees affected with COVID-19 to have their OWCP cases approved. The USPS Health and Resource Management Office has created unnecessary hardships for USPS injured employees, in reference to their sick leave taken and COP benefits. In my opinion, an audit is essential.

    Oct 17, 2021
  • anon

    I was able to find good information from your blog articles.

    Jul 23, 2021
  • anon

    they were not professional, lied to terminate an employee during the outbreak and influx of parcels, maintained hostile work environments and as usual favoritism amongst employees, and allowed theft/harassment towards customers mail. this is not the United States Postal Service i swore an oath to protect.....OIG's may be the problem, covering for certain situations to protect the Agency is what i've witnessed for over 15 years

    Jul 13, 2021
  • anon

    It’s the buddy system around here, either their supervisor buddy covers for them or their buddy at the district does. Either way they get paid and don’t come to work. This leaves those that do to catch all the hell. The public has no idea why the service is so poor, but they’re starting to find out.

    Jul 13, 2021
  • anon

    My postmaster did okay under the situation because we had no problems with COVID 19 but being on our local branch board the supervisors in some offices treated the workers that were not sick like slaves the postal service needs to hire more employees. The employees that were not sick could not make up for the short fall . CCA’s have no paid benefits for 90-120 days and 50 percent don’t stay away because of abusive supervisors that don’t have to be responsible for their abusive actions

    Jul 12, 2021
  • anon

    cca's receive their benefits from day 1...the little they insurance from day 1, the 6 holidays start after 90 days

    Jul 13, 2021

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