Personal mail receipt prohibited at government addresses

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Most people revel in the joy of receiving a package in the mail, but having personal mail from off-post delivered to an APG government address or building poses a security threat and is against Army policy.

According to Army Regulation 25-51, Official Mail and Distribution Management, “the receipt of mail that is personal, unofficial or non-mission related is prohibited.”

“You’re never supposed to get personal mail at a government address,” said Janet Brown, APG Official Mail and Distribution Center Management Analysts of Administrative Services, adding that the Center x-rays every package and piece of mail that passes through it.

The Mail & Distribution Center has seen everything from baseball hats, to candy to expensive watches x-rayed at the mailroom. In the past, recipients of personal mail received a friendly notice that they received a package, and that it was being forwarded to their home address. In 2016, however, the mailroom began automatically returning mail to its sender, with no notification the recipient. Habitual offenders of AR 25-21 are reported to their chain of command.

There are some exceptions to the regulation, including newly assigned personnel who may use official mail channels for the receipt of personal, unofficial or non-mission related mail for up to 120 days, and students attending a course of instruction of six months or less.

Soldiers, civilians and family members living on post can have personal items delivered by USPS directly to their home address. Mailroom staff said all other Team APG members must have personal and non-mission related items delivered to their off-post home addresses.

For more information, contact Janet Brown at 410-278-2252, or janet.l.brown.civ@mail.mil or Tamara Kimp at 410-436-8721, or tamara.m.civ@mail.mil.