Consumers give postal reform thumbs-up in DMA poll

A poll of 1,005 consumers conducted by Princeton, NJ-based ORC International for the Direct Marketing Association during Jan. 5 and 6 shows that consumers overwhelmingly favor postal legislative reform. When asked if they feel that legislation is necessary to give the U.S. Postal Service the flexibility and tools it needs to reform and improve its operations, 73% said yes; 19% said no, and the remainder said they didn’t know. On the other hand, just 55% said the problems of the USPS should be a high priority of Congress.

The DMA, which intends to run consumer polls related to its members’ needs more frequently than it has in the past, pointed out in the postal reform question that the USPS has been operating at a deficit for the past two years and that “some say” postal reform is needed to avoid continual rate increases. On the other hand, the question didn’t ask respondents not to take into consideration the effects of the recent infiltration of anthrax in the mail stream.

“One of the reasons we ran the survey now as opposed to October,” says DMA spokesperson Lou Mastria, “was so that to the best of our ability we could mitigate” the effects of the anthrax attacks on people’s responses. “We played around with the wording in the question and tried to treat these as two separate issues.”