Harvey help

Soldier picks up child in flooded area

Postal Service employees can now make financial contributions to help USPS colleagues whose homes have been damaged by Hurricane Harvey.

The U.S. Office of Personnel Management, a federal agency, has authorized a special solicitation to assist victims of the devastating storm. PMG Megan J. Brennan has designated the Postal Employees’ Relief Fund (PERF) as the charity to receive contributions from USPS employees.

“Many Postal Service employees in Texas and Louisiana are dealing with significant hardships as a result of this storm. Through PERF, these employees can receive some of the assistance they need to begin the recovery and rebuilding process,” the PMG said.

You can make one-time credit and debit card donations to PERF to specifically aid Postal Service victims.

These donations can be made online at www.postalrelief.com or by mailing a check to the following address: Postal Employees’ Relief Fund, PO Box 7630, Woodbridge, VA 22195.

This special solicitation is outside the Combined Federal Campaign, the annual charity drive for federal workplaces.

PERF provides assistance grants to employees who are victims of natural disasters, such as hurricanes, floods, wildfires and earthquakes. The organization, established in 1990, has distributed more than $16.2 million in grants to employees in need.

The PERF site has additional information.

Harvey update

Photo of U.S. Treasury check

The Postal Service is working to reconnect customers in the Gulf Coast region with their mail in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

Beginning Sept. 1, customers in Houston and Rio Grande districts who receive Treasury checks via U.S. Mail — including checks from the Social Security Administration, Veterans Administration and other agencies — can pick up these checks at a Post Office location near their ZIP Code.

The Postal Service also announced it will distribute any identifiable medications sent through the mail.

Additionally, USPS is reminding customers to complete change-of-address requests, especially if they expect to be out of their homes for extended periods.

The Aug. 31 news releases for Houston District and Rio Grande District customers have more information.

Are you ready?

Woman and child looking at mobile device

Disasters don’t plan ahead. You can.

To mark National Preparedness Month in September, the Postal Service will offer reminders and tips to help employees make preparedness part of their daily lives.

For example, to plan for emergencies at home, employees should follow these steps:

  • Prepare an emergency supply kit
  • Create a family emergency plan
  • Stay informed about potential emergencies that may affect your area

A FEMA information card is available on LiteBlue to help you determine needs for you and your family.

The USPS National Preparedness site has additional tips on preparing for emergencies, while Ready.gov, a Department of Homeland Security site, also has information.

Need to know

Woman working at laptop

Ethics training. The USPS Ethics Office is offering a refresher course covering federal ethical conduct laws.

The session will provide an overview of ethics laws that apply to all federal employees. USPS will offer the session through WebEx five times from Sept. 13-29.

The training is available to employees who are Executive and Administration Schedule level 18 and above. Employees who don’t regularly receive ethics training are encouraged to participate, along with employees who are required to file financial disclosure information each year.

“Being familiar with ethics laws helps us support the Postal Service’s mission with honesty, integrity and impartiality in the spirit of service to others,” said Associate General Counsel and Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer Michael Elston.

The Ethics Blue page has more information, including a schedule of the sessions.

Speak up. The Postal Bulletin’s latest edition encourages employees to participate in the Postal Pulse survey.

Available through Sept. 15, the 5-minute survey measures employee engagement. The feedback is also used to improve USPS workplaces.

Got news for “Need to know”? Email your submissions to uspslink@usps.gov.

News quiz

National Guardsmen put dog on rescue boat in floodwater

Here’s Link’s latest “News quiz,” a weekly feature that invites readers to test their knowledge of recent stories. The correct answers appear at the end.

1. True or false: The Employee Assistance Program and Postal Employees’ Relief Fund are available to help USPS employees affected by Hurricane Harvey.

a) True
b) False
2. About how much revenue from shipping and packages is USPS on track to record this year?

a) $13 billion
b) $17 billion
c) $19 billion
d) $20 billion

3. Who said this during a recent meeting with rural carriers: “The future is all about the customer. We have to listen and quickly adapt to their needs.”

a) PMG Megan J. Brennan
b) Chief Financial Officer Joseph Corbett
c) Southern Area VP Shaun Mossman
d) Judicial Officer Gary Shapiro

4. Which labor leader was featured on a USPS stamp twice?

a) Jane Addams
b) Susan B. Anthony
c) Dr. Alice Hamilton
d) Frances Perkins

5. When was Labor Day first celebrated?

a) 1842
b) 1882
c) 1888
d) 1894

Answers: 1) a. 2) c. 3) a. 4) b. 5) b.

Look for a new quiz next week and share your feedback with Link at uspslink@usps.gov.