Mail carriers in particular have been the focus of “criminal acts,” as described in a letter written to Oakland residents by Postmaster Sunil Chanan in March.

Mail theft occurs at several stages of the delivery process, including when thieves stalk couriers, break into mailboxes, and steal mail. The US Postal Service in Oakland has had a rough go of it in recent years.

Delivery In Oakland Has Been Surprisingly Erratic.

Time-sensitive paperwork and medications have been misplaced, and some communities have gone weeks without mail delivery.

The local USPS administration blames a severe lack of personnel for the current difficulties. In the past, several carriers explained the labor shortage by saying that workers are leaving due of the poor pay and high difficulty of the job.

However, until recently, the issue of burglary had not become noticeable enough to affect workers and their jobs.

To find out if the Oakland office is making progress toward better working conditions, how Oakland carriers are coping with the burglaries, and if safety issues have hindered mail delivery, we reached out to the USPS and its employees.

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The Scoop On Oakland

Mail carriers report a high rate of broken windows in Oakland. Electronics, personal information for identity theft or fraud, and universal keys to open mailboxes across the city are the most common targets of burglary.

There has been a spate of robberies against Oakland mail carriers, and these crimes are not isolated. U.S. Postal Service federal inspector Jeff Fitch told The Oaklandside last week that such incidents are part of a larger trend of thefts from USPS properties across the country.

Fitch, Who Is A Member Of The USPS Police Unit Entrusted With Combating Mail

theft and fraud, claimed that carriers all around the country have been robbed at gunpoint, with knives, or by other violent ways.

Robberies in Hayward, San Leandro, Vallejo, San Francisco, and Sunnyvale have all increased recently. However, the biggest concentration has been in Oakland.

“Our concern is the safety of the letter carriers so that they can go about their duties,” Fitch added.

The US Postal Service reports that several Oakland mail carriers have been the targets of several robberies this year. Six times, beginning on March 15, one Oakland carrier was robbed.

The perpetrators of some of the robberies have worked in groups, while others have acted alone. Large pieces of mail or boxes that may contain valuables, like computers, are a common target for thieves.

Mail carriers use universal postal keys to access mailboxes at apartment buildings and companies, and thieves target these keys as well. When burglars take mail, it’s likely so they can exploit the contents in identity theft or other forms of fraud.

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In February, There Were Repeated Armed Robberies, According To Oakland’s USPS

union leader Ed Fletcher of the National Association of Letter Carriers Local 1111. Fletcher estimated that 20 mail carriers have been robbed at gunpoint in the last five years, and that “countless” more have had their windows smashed in while carrying mail.

Fletcher emphasized the importance of “super awareness of the surroundings” for the bearers. Bad things happened in February.

The [truck] locks were shot out on two mail vans. When opening the truck, one carrier was approached by a person who held a gun in their face and demanded the universal keys.

A letter carrier in Oakland who did not want to be identified said that local police officers are not responding to their calls, which is why they are being targeted by criminals.

The carrier complained, “I’ve called the police in the middle of a crime, and they don’t answer or blow off the answer.” Our postal investigators are generally late to the scene. It’s a gamble if you wait until you’re already in the thick of things. As it is, the job is arduous.

According to Fitch, the USPS officers and the Oakland police robbery section have resumed their collaboration, which will allow them to share information about potential suspects and, ideally, lead to arrests.

Two teams of USPS inspectors are currently stationed in Oakland; one is investigating mail theft, while the other is investigating robberies.

At a news conference last week outlining the problems affecting Oakland carriers, inspector Rafael Nunez said, “We take these robberies and assaults personally, and there is no more important mission for us as federal agents.”

Fitch suggested that reporting crimes was a good way for Oakland citizens to assist out. But he emphasized that it’s not worth the risk to try to stop a heist by confronting the suspect.

Union representative Fletcher stated, “Ultimately, it’s up to the Postal Service to provide more resources to [prevent this from happening.”

Even When They’re Scared, Mail Carriers still Have To Do Their Jobs.

A mail carrier in Oakland retrieves mail from a street corner box. In the past few months, several carriers have been attacked while in the midst of their journeys.

A mail carrier in Oakland retrieves mail from a street corner box. In the past few months, several carriers have been attacked while in the midst of their journeys.

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Many Oakland Mail Carriers, Including Those Who Deliver In The City’s Toughest

eighborhoods like East and West Oakland, were interviewed. They informed us that some of them were tired of thinking about it, some were afraid, especially when they had to work after dark, and others tried not to think about it at all.

Those mail carriers whose routes took them through North Oakland were less affected by the violence but nevertheless concerned for their coworkers.


  • Rohit Prasad

    Rohit Prasad is a dedicated content writer. He currently works for Trending Work, a popular online platform that provides news and insights on the latest trends in business, technology, and lifestyle.

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