The NAACP has filed a lawsuit against the United States Postal Service (USPS) and Postmaster General Louis DeJoy.
A press release from the organization alleges DeJoy has impeded the timely distribution of mail, implemented crippling policies on postal workers, and sabotaged the USPS in a blatant attempt to disenfranchise voters of color who are already more harshly impacted by the coronavirus and require alternative methods to in-person voting to protect their health and safety.
“As the country faces an uphill battle against COVID-19 and systemic racism, we’re witnessing a significant onslaught against our postal system at a time when prompt mail delivery matters more than ever, especially for voters of color,” said Derrick Johnson, president and CEO of the NAACP. “This willful and blatant attempt to obstruct the mail system amidst a pandemic and on the precipice of a pivotal election is a direct threat to the people of this nation’s right to vote in a fair and free election.”
The suit, which addresses the changes DeJoy has made in recent weeks, seeks to suspend them and restore reliable service. The suit also seeks to ensure mail-in ballots are a priority as they have been in past years.
“Since implementing his operational ‘pivot,’ there have been substantial delays with entire towns in rural areas not receiving their mail on certain days and people in some cities going days or weeks without receiving any mail at all,” the release states. “These delays have caused Americans to go without medicines and benefits, and they have prevented eligible Americans from voting by mail in their primary elections.”
The NAACP isn’t the only one taking action against the agency. Four voters from different states are suing the agency, DeJoy, and the Trump administration to reverse several of DeJoy’s changes to the USPS, which include eliminating all overtime and removing sorting machines.
“In short, DeJoy, doing Trump’s public bidding has ensured even greater chaos in the fall elections, putting his thumb on the electoral scales to help ensure Trump’s reelection and/or provide grounds for an election contest–not to mention helping Trump sow doubt in the minds of Americans about the integrity of the electoral process and the outcome itself, a loathsome tactic once associated only with tin-horn dictators and banana republics,” the voters wrote in their complaint.