Protesters hold sleep-in to save the Berkeley post office

A group determined to stop the sale of Berkeley's post office set up tents Saturday  night on the steps of the building. Photo: Ted Friedman
Mindy Stone, right, part of a group determined to stop the sale of Berkeley’s downtown post office that set up tents on Saturday July 27 on the steps of the building at 2000 Alston Way. Photo: Ted Friedman

After a group of 100 people rallied Saturday to protest the federal government’s plans to sell Berkeley’s main post office, a group of about 15 people set up tents on the steps of the building at 2000 Allston Way. They camped there overnight.

“We’re here until the post office is saved,” said Mindy Stone, one of the organizers behind Save the Berkeley Post Office.

The protesters are fighting the USPS’ decision to sell the building on Allston Way and rent a smaller space downtown. Postal officials contend they must downscale because the USPS is hermorraging money. Critics believe that the financial crisis was artificially created by Congress, which has required the post office to prepay into employee retirement funds at a much higher rate than other federal departments.

The USPS last week turned down the city’s appeal that it not sell its Renaissance-style building.


Harvey L. Smith, president of the board of trustees of the National New Deal Preservation Association, led a walking tour by the post office on Sunday. Photo: Ted Friedman
Harvey L. Smith, president of the board of trustees of the National New Deal Preservation Association, led a walking tour by the post office on Sunday, July 28. Photo: Ted Friedman
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Tents and signs outside Berkeley’s downtown post office at 2000 Allston Way. Photo: Ted Friedman
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On Sunday night, about six to ten people slept in tents on the steps of the post office. Photo: Ted Friedman

Related:
Locals, city fight on to stop sale of post office [07.19.13]
Berkeley’s political firmament rallies for post office [05.03.13]
Post Office to sell its downtown Berkeley building [04.22.13]
Council asks for 1-year moratorium on post office sale [03.06.13]
USPS hears vocal opposition to sale of downtown building [02.28.13]
Post Office public hearing to focus on Berkeley sale plan [02.26.13]
Berkeley discusses future of main post office [02.13.12]
Protesters take Save Post Office demo to San Francisco [12.05.12]
Rally held to protest sale of Berkeley’s main post office [11.15.12]
Developer eyes Berkeley’s historic post office [08.01.12]
Chances are slim of stopping sale of Berkeley’s post office [07.23.12]
Postal Service plans sale of Berkeley’s main post office [06.25.12]

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