The Greenhorns – a small collective of film/TV professionals and writers including Arundel Patriot publisher Victoria Bruce and APat editor Yasemin Jamison– launched #StandByYourMail, the People’s Postal Rescue Campaign yesterday.
Where would we be without the U.S. Postal Service? This most trusted branch of the U.S. government forms the very infrastructure that connects every household across the country. Yet the USPS, which has operated since 1775, faces a financial crisis that is prompting its critics to call for the post office to be privatized. That’s where StandByYourMail comes in.
“It’s preposterous to think of shutting down the post office. I can’t imagine the cost of sending mail and packages when private industry takes over. Plus it will be the end of excellent union jobs that have helped a lot of families stay solidly middle class,” said local activist and APat editor Yasemin Jamison.
This campaign seeks to raise awareness of the crisis, underscore the importance of the postal service to American life – not to mention its
electoral process – and mobilize grassroots support to help save a ubiquitous service Americans too often take for granted.
“We were in lockdown. A group of seasoned professionals on a Zoom call talking about how the world is forever changed,” said Pascal Akesson, a founding member of the Greenhorns. “Rather than whining about it, we decided to pool our collective skills and act for the greater good. For our first act, the People’s Postal Rescue Campaign jumped
out as a top priority.”
Victoria Bruce of Riva, who is a filmmaker and author, jumped at the chance to be part of the Greenhorn collective. “I love the post office. It’s literally the circulatory system of the country. The idea that this administration wants to do away with it is really unfathomable,” she said. Bruce wrote a book in 2017 about the post office called Inspector Oldfield and the Black Hand Society. “It’s when it really hit home how vital having a government entity like the post office is to the public good.”
With the 2020 general election around the corner and as many as 70% of eligible voters expected to vote by mail due to the ongoing health emergency, the Post Office plays a vital role in the U.S. democratic process.
Starting with a feature of the Save the USPS Caravan rally in Washington, DC, the campaign is producing free content (audio, visual and text) under the #StandByYourMail brand to amplify the efforts of labor unions and other partners – including APWU, NALC and The Grand Alliance – working to save and strengthen the Post Office.
Toward that end, the Greenhorns hope to energize a fan club of popular support for the USPS – fans to post and share content across their social media platforms. A social media tool kit for partners and USPS fans can be found at https://www.standbyyourmail.org/resources.
The campaign also encourages supporters to go that extra mile (as the post office does) and create their own content. StandByYourMail wants USPS fans to post stories about their favorite postal workers, and selfies with mail carriers. Stories about what makes the U.S. Postal Service a unique part of every community, from Anchorage, Alaska to the Florida Keys.
“We’re very appreciative of this voluntary effort by journalists and videographers to highlight the importance of the USPS during this critical time”, said American Postal Workers Union President Mark Dimondstein. “The U.S. Postal Service serves 160 million addresses six and seven times a week. This is the people’s post office, a national treasure, perhaps never more vital than during this pandemic and in an election year when a record number of ballots will be sent by mail. Yet, unless the people rally and make their voices heard and Congress acts, the USPS will run out of funds to operate.”
“The U.S. Postal Service has always been there for us, we’re working to ensure it always will be. We want people to recognize everything the postal service does, and to imagine where we would be without it,” said Greenhorn founding member Art Jones.
About the Greenhorns: We the Greenhorns are a group of filmmakers, journalists and communicators directing our collective skills, experience and passions to advance the fight for a better world. Greenhorns members believe a strong public Postal Service is our democratic right and, as storytellers, we’re trying to get the word out to protect and enhance these services now and for many generations to come. For more information
about the Greenhorns, please visit: www.standbyyourmail.org
Questions? Please see our Facebook Post.