State senators join fight against changes to Central IL post offices

CENTRAL ILLINOIS (WCIA) — State Senators Paul Faraci (D-Champaign) and Doris Turner (D-Springfield) are joining several other officials in pushing against a proposal that would move mail services to larger cities and away from Central Illinois.

Postal workers, community members, and leaders have actively fought against the possible changes that would affect the Mattis Avenue postal hub in Champaign. The changes would downsize the facility and turn it from a processing and distribution center, to simply a local processing center. The United States Postal Service’s proposal is facing similar pushback in other Central Illinois locations.

READ MORE: Postal workers rally against changes to Champaign post office

On Thursday, Faraci and Turner released a joint statement on the matter.

“We can’t risk our mail being diverted to St. Louis and Chicago,” Faraci and Turner said. “Moving local mail to post offices far from Central Illinois will not only slow down service, but also create life threatening hardships for those who rely on reliable mail service for their medication needs. Under these recommendations, Springfield, Champaign and surrounding communities will be directly impacted.”

In addition to longer delivery times and disruptions to the local economy, the duo cited the possibility of postal workers losing their jobs or being displaced as other negative impacts related to this proposal.

“If the Postmaster General wants to make sweeping changes that hurt our community in the name of ‘efficiency,’ we hope to see the evidence to back up the claims,” the statement concluded.

The message comes a little over two weeks after Congresswomen Nikki Budzinski (IL-13) and Mary Miller (IL-15) also voiced their opposition in a bipartisan statement. On Tuesday, Budzinski was joined by Senators Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth, as well as Representatives Mike Quigley (IL-05) and Eric Sorensen (IL-17) in challenging the proposal through a letter.

Faraci and Turner’s full statement can be read here.

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