667 Service Matters
667.1 General Service Behavior
667.11 Compiling Directories
Employees may not compile or furnish restricted
information for or otherwise assist publishers in compiling city directories
for public use, nor request publishers to send free copies to them, nor
accept any money or gratuity arising from publication of directories.
667.12 Engaging in Campaigns
for Changes in Mail Service
Employees in active status must not engage in campaigns
for or against changes in mail service. This regulation must not be construed
to infringe on the rights to participate in labor organizations.
667.13 Paying for Exchange
It is unlawful for employees to give or receive
payment, directly or indirectly, to affect an exchange of position in
the same or different postal units, or any place in the public service.
This offense is punishable by fine and imprisonment and disqualification
from holding any office in the federal government.
667.14 Manufacture of Rural
Employees are prohibited from manufacturing or acting
as the agent for a manufacturer of rural mailboxes.
Carriers must not loiter or stop for unnecessary
conversation on their routes. Employees must not linger about cases or
racks after their tours of duty have ended or report at cases or racks
before their tours are scheduled to begin.
667.16 Controversies With the
Employees must not engage in controversies with
customers, railway employees, airline employees, or other members of the
public while on duty or on federal property.
667.17 Obstructing the Mail
Title 18 U.S.C. 1701 provides penalties for persons
who knowingly and willfully obstruct or retard the mail. The statute does
not afford employees immunity from arrest for violations of law.
667.18 Giving Testimony or
Campaigning for Additional Transportation Services
Postmasters and other field officials must not furnish
postal information or testimonial statements or letters that purport to
reflect postal needs to civic bodies or rail or air common carriers to
be used in support of applications for new or additional common carrier
service at a given community. Such requests for postal information must
be referred to Headquarters. When there are justifiable reasons for recommending
changes in transportation services, postmasters and other field officials
must furnish a complete report to the proper official at Headquarters
and then await specific instructions before engaging in any local activity
or hearing relative to such changes.
667.2 Interception of Oral
or Wire Communications by Postal Employees
During the course of activities related to postal
employment, postal employees may not record, monitor, or otherwise intercept
the oral or wire communications of any other person through the use of
any electronic, mechanical, or other device, nor listen in on a telephone
conversation, nor direct another to do so, unless all parties involved
in the communication are made aware of and consent to such interception.
This prohibition does not apply to postal inspectors
or Office of Inspector General investigators while acting in the course
of their official duties, nor does it apply to authorized personnel conducting
"Compliance and Monitoring" activities in accordance with Handbook
AS-805, Information Security. All activity conducted in this
area must be in accord with applicable federal statutes governing the
interception of wire or oral communications by law enforcement officers.
Call monitoring programs may be established by postal
management for legitimate business purposes, such as quality assurance
and training. Call monitoring programs must comply with any applicable
federal statutes and regulations.
For the purposes of 667.2, the terms oral communication,
wire communication, intercept, and electronic, mechanical, or other device have the meanings used in 18 U.S.C. 2510.
667.3 Records, Information,
and Associated Processing Systems and Equipment
667.31 Purpose of Controls
Federal law and sound business practice require
compliance with certain rules over the uses and protection of information
and information processing resources owned by the Postal Service. These
rules apply specifically to those types of Postal Service property emphasized
in the definition at 669h. They are provided here for the information
of current and former employees and also for use by management as a basis
for ensuring compliance and taking disciplinary action, when appropriate.
These rules supplement 667.18 and 667.21 referred to earlier in Section
667.32 Prohibited Disclosures
Employees may not furnish to members of the public
any Postal Service records or copies of records, or information taken
from Postal Service records, including information contained in a computer
system, unless it is a part of the duties of their position to do so.
Decisions to withhold or disclose records and information must be consistent
with applicable laws, Executive Orders, and Postal Service regulations
and directives. Accordingly, the responsible official must consult with
the Chief Privacy Officer (CPO), managing counsel for the appropriate
field legal office, or the general counsel if there is any question as
to the appropriate course of action.
667.322 Personal Information
Disclosing nonpublic information about an individual
to another person or organization not entitled by Postal Service regulations
to the information, without the signed authorization from the individual,
is prohibited under penalty of law. See Handbook AS-353, Guide to
Privacy and the Freedom of Information Act.
667.323 Trade Information
Disclosing any information not available for public
disclosure as described under ASM 824 and Handbook AS-353, Guide to
Privacy and the Freedom of Information Act, Chapter 3, to any unauthorized
person or organization is prohibited under penalty of law.
667.33 Prohibited Uses
667.331 Personal Use
Use of Postal Service property (as defined in 669h)
for personal enjoyment, private gain, or other unauthorized activity is
prohibited, except that management at each Postal Service employment installation
may permit employees to make limited personal use of postal office equipment,
including information technology, (as defined in 669j). See Handbook AS-805, Information Security, Chapter 5, Acceptable Use.
Users will be held accountable for damage to postal
property caused by negligence or intentionally destructive acts.
667.333 Bypassing Security
Bypassing or attempting to bypass established security
controls in violation of the Administrative Support Manual (ASM),
Chapter 8, is prohibited.
667.334 Sanctions for Misuse
Use of postal equipment in violation or excess of
667.33 (Prohibited Uses) may result in limitations on
future use, administrative action, disciplinary action, criminal penalty,
and/or personal financial liability.
667.34 Protection Responsibilities
Employees must protect all information about individuals,
customers, all other Restricted Information, and all National Security
Information against unauthorized use and disclosure.
667.35 Reporting Violations
668 Legal Assistance Provided
by the Postal Service
668.1 Representation of Postal
Service Employees by the Department of Justice in Civil and Criminal Cases
Under the following procedures, an employee (hereby
defined to include present and former employees or their estates) may
be provided representation in civil proceedings and in state criminal
proceedings in which they are sued, subpoenaed, or charged in their official
capacity, when the actions for which representation is requested reasonably
appear to have been performed within the scope of their employment, and
providing representation would be in the interest of the United States.
A provision of the Federal Tort Claims Act prohibits
suits against individual Government employees (including Postal Service
employees) for loss, damage, or destruction of property or personal injury
or death when caused by the negligent or wrongful act or omission of the
employee while acting within the scope of his or her employment (Title
28, U.S.C. Section 2679).
668.12 Procedure for Requesting
Legal Representation by the Department of Justice
668.121 Employee Responsibilities
An employee who believes he or she is entitled to
representation by the Department of Justice in a proceeding must promptly
submit a written request for that representation, together with all process
and pleadings served, to the employee's installation head. Failure to
submit a request promptly may prevent the processing necessary to obtain
approval of the employee's request. In order to give a request proper
consideration, it must contain a detailed statement from the employee
of his or her knowledge of the subject matter of the proceeding and be
accompanied by all pertinent documents. The Department of Justice asks
that the letter requesting representation be addressed to the:
ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL CIVIL DIVISION
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
WASHINGTON DC 20530-0001
but that the request letter not be sent directly
to the Assistant Attorney General. The request is to be sent directly
to the employee's installation head, who will in turn forward the request
in accordance with 668.122. The Department of Justice requires that the
a. The date the employee was served.
b. The date on which the employee must
respond or appear at a proceeding.
c. A statement that the employee has
read the complaint; that all conduct related to the allegations in the
complaint occurred within the scope of the employee's official duties;
and that such conduct was done in the good faith belief that it was proper.
d. A statement describing in detail
the employee's knowledge of the subject matter of the complaint. Failure
to provide a detailed statement of the facts may prevent the processing
necessary to obtain approval of the request.
668.122 Installation Head or
Higher Level Official Responsibilities
The installation head or next higher level or other
designated official must:
a. Add to the employee's request a separate
statement indicating whether they believe the employee was acting within
the scope of his or her employment at the time of the conduct which is
the focus of the suit, subpoena, or citation.
b. Forward the request without delay
to the managing counsel for the area in which the proceeding arose.
c. Submit a covering transmittal memorandum
to the managing counsel containing a recommendation as to whether providing
the employee representation would be in the best interests of the Postal
Service and a statement detailing the installation head's or appropriate
designee's knowledge of the subject matter of the case.
668.123 Postal Inspection Service
and Office of Inspector General
Postal Inspection Service personnel and Office of
Inspector General personnel should follow procedures established by the
chief postal inspector and inspector general respectively to request representation
by the Department of Justice rather than follow the procedures set forth
in this section.
668.124 Criteria for Granting
The Department of Justice provides representation
at its discretion and only after it determines that the employee acted
within the scope of his or her authority and that such representation
would be in the best interest of the United States.
668.125 Department of Justice
Upon determination by the Department of Justice
that an attorney will represent an employee, the employee will be so notified,
and will be provided information about the nature of Department of Justice
668.2 Reimbursement of Employees
for Legal Fees, Judgments, and Settlements
668.21 Legal Fees
An employee whose request under 668.12 has been
denied for any reason may request reimbursement for legal fees incurred
by his or her use of private counsel through the appropriate managing
668.22 Judgments and Settlements
An employee who has filed a request for representation
under 668.12 may file a request for payment of any adverse judgment or
settlement with the appropriate managing counsel.
668.23 Criteria for Reimbursement
Each request for reimbursement for legal fees, judgments,
or settlements will be considered by the managing counsel on its individual
merits after the case is concluded. Generally, reimbursement will be made
a. It is equitable and fair to do so.
b. The employee acted reasonably, within
the scope of his or her authority, and not recklessly, in bad faith, or
with obvious indifference to instructions.
c. The amount requested is reasonable,
and reimbursement is deemed to be in the best interest of the Postal Service.
668.3 USPS Governors and Officers
668.31 Requests for Legal Representation
The provisions of 668 apply also to the governors
and officers and inspector general of the Postal Service. If such persons
are named as defendants and desire to be represented by the Department
of Justice, they must submit their requests in accordance with 668.12
to the general counsel. However, the Chairman of the Board of Governors
and the postmaster general submit their requests directly to the General
Counsel. The Inspector General submits the request through the OIG General
Counsel to the USPS General Counsel.
668.32 Legal Fees
A person covered by 668.3 who is represented by
private counsel may apply to the general counsel for payment or reimbursement
for legal fees. The general counsel will exercise discretion according
to the criteria in 668.23.
668.33 Judgments and Settlements
A person covered by 668.3 may apply to the general
counsel for payment or reimbursement for any adverse judgment or settlement.
The general counsel will exercise discretion according to the criteria
Definitions of terms used in 660 are:
a. Postal Service - the United
States Postal Service as established by 39 U.S.C. 201.
b. Employee - an individual
appointed to a position, temporary or permanent, within the Postal Service,
or hired as an executive under an employment contract, including a substitute.
The term employee does not include a governor of the Postal Service.
c. Person - an individual,
a corporation, a company, an association, a firm, a partnership, a society,
a joint stock company, or any other organization, institution, or entity.
d. Official responsibility - direct administrative or operating authority, whether intermediate or
final, and either exercisable alone or with others, and either personally
or through subordinates, to approve, disapprove, or otherwise direct Postal
e. Employee's interests - the
interests of an employee, his or her spouse, his or her minor child or
children, and other individuals related to the employee by blood who are
residents of the employee's household.
f. Business dealings with the Postal
Service - any contract, work, or business, or the performance thereof,
or any litigation arising out of or involving any contract, work, or business,
or the sale or acquisition of any real or personal property, or any interest
in property, whose expense, price, or consideration is payable by or to
the Postal Service.
g. The Standards of Ethical Conduct - the Code of Ethical Conduct consisting of the regulations published
in 5 CFR 2635, 5 CFR 7001, and 39 CFR 447.
h. Property - includes records
and recorded information regardless of their storage medium (e.g., paper,
magnetic surfaces, film, etc.); information processing equipment such
as computers and word processors, along with their peripheral and terminal
devices; filmers, duplicators, and copiers; and information systems software.
i. Information system executive - a Postal Service official who prescribes the existence of, and
the policies for, an information system.
j. Office equipment - includes,
but is not limited to, personal computers, printers and modems, computer
software (including web browsers), telephones, facsimile machines, photocopiers,
consumable office products, and office supplies.
k. Personnel action - means
an appointment, promotion, adverse action or other disciplinary or corrective
action, detail, transfer, reassignment, reinstatement, restoration, reemployment,
performance evaluation, a decision concerning pay, benefits, awards, education
or training that may reasonably be expected to lead to an appointment,
promotion, or performance evaluation, a decision to order psychiatric
testing or evaluation, or any other significant change in duties, responsibilities,
or working conditions.
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- National EEO Compliance and
Labor Relations, 4-14-05
continue to Handbook EL-502>