ROANOKE (WSLS 10) – A quick trip to the post office may not be so quick anymore. The Roanoke mail distribution center will begin moving operations out of the city beginning in April.
Carlton Cooper is president of the Local 482 American Postal Workers Union. On Wednesday, he and other employees learned about the United States Postal Service’s (USPS) plan to move mail services from Roanoke to Greensboro, North Carolina by mid-April.
“It’s devastating we keep losing good paying jobs” he said. “It causes a trickle down effect with the whole community.”
Cooper said the change impacts 105 clerks, 25 maintenance workers and 70 mail handlers. According to the United State Postal Services website, their Roanoke location will be moved to Greensboro, North Carolina and their Norfolk location has already started their transition to Richmond.
Cooper said salaries ranged from mid $30’s to $50,000 or more a year. He said affected workers will have to choose between finding a job in Roanoke or relocating.
In addition to job losses, Cooper said the USPS intends to move originating mail from Roanoke to Greensboro by mid-April, destination mail by late July, and other mail later in the year. He said losing local services could cause delays in delivery.
“There will no longer be a post mark across the stamp that says Roanoke, Virginia. At that point all of originating mail will be sent to Greensboro and then come back to Roanoke to be distributed” he said.
Stamped first-class mail currently takes between one and three days to reach its destination anywhere in the nation depending on the distance traveled. Once the changes are in place, Cooper said a day or more will be added to delivery times.