USPS testing paycheck cashing, other financial services

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Cars drive past a mailbox on August 17, 2020 in Morristown, New Jersey.

The U.S. Postal Service has begun offering some financial services at a few East Coast locations in a possible move toward reviving postal banking. 

The branches offering the service are currently limited to select locations in Washington, D.C.; Falls Church, Va.; Baltimore; and the Bronx, New York. Services include cashing checks, paying bills, providing money orders and wire transfers, according to NBC News

Tatiana Roy, a spokesperson for the Postal Service, said in an email to The Hill that the program began Sept. 13 as a collaboration between the Postal Service and the American Postal Workers Union. 

Roy added that customers could use their payroll checks to buy a gift card of up to $500, but checks larger than $500 would not be accepted.

Roy also said that offering new products and services that are affordable, convenient and secure” aligned with the Postal Service’s 10-year plan “to achieve financial sustainability and service excellence.”

Reinstating postal banking would require action in Congress, which has failed in the past despite efforts from progressive lawmakers. However, the program could serve as a way of proving the concept could work, NBC said.

Advocates say the move could both help the postal service’s troubled finances and provide banking access to millions of people who currently do without, NBC said.

Mark Dimondstein, the president of the American Postal Workers Union, told NBC the handful of branches offering financial services are “a small step in a very positive direction.”

“We view expanded services as a win for the people of the country, a win for the Postal Service itself, because it will bring in new revenue, and, of course, a win for the postal workers who are extremely dedicated to the mission,” Dimondstein said to NBC.

The Hill has reached out to the American Postal Workers Union for more information. 

Updated at 5:52 p.m.


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