September 9, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON - Today, Congressman Ted W. Lieu (D-Los Angeles County) sent a letter to Postmaster General Louis DeJoy urging him to take steps to ensure live animals are being shipped through USPS safely and humanely. The letter comes after recent press reports indicate that animals have died while in the Postal Service's care.

In the letter, Mr. Lieu writes:

Dear Postmaster DeJoy: 

I am deeply disturbed by recent press reports recounting animal fatalities in parcels carried by the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). I request that youreview USPS guidance regarding the shipment of live animals. 

Unlike other parcel carriers, USPS lacks clear guidance on humane care and safety of live animals during transportation. This is deeply concerning and appears to be out of step with not only industry best practices, but also inconsistent with the humane treatment of these animals. Section 521 of USPS Publication 52, Hazardous, Restricted and Perishable Mail states that animals included in USPS parcels may be subject to extended times without access to food or water in transit.

I ask that the USPS undertake a thorough policy review and a comparative review of the policies of other major parcel carriers to determine how live animal transportation can be done safely and humanely. It is my expectation that the Postal Service will make meaningful reforms regarding live animal shipments following its internal review process.