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For broadcast on CBS Radio Network stations 
November 24-25, 2001:

Dear Santa....

The Stamp Collecting Report, I'm Lloyd de Vries.
Neither rain nor snow nor ANTHRAX, it seems, will stop the 
letters for Santa programs in many post offices. For years, 
postal workers and volunteers have answered these letters 
from children on behalf of Santa Claus.

But this year is different: Postal workers have been infected 
with anthrax from the mail they handled. And the letters that 
the children write look a lot like the mail that was contaminated 
with the bacteria spores: Hand-written addresses, no return 
addresses, maybe a little rumpled or even...lumpy -- from the 
cookies inside.

Cincinnati postal managers decided the risk was too great, and 
canceled this year's program, but then reconsidered. New York 
City, where anthrax actually was found, will continue the nation's 
biggest Santa letters program. So will the North Pole, Alaska.

In Christmas, Florida, Santa's helpers will answer the letters, 
but wearing latex gloves.

So, go ahead and write those letters, kids, because, yes, even 
this year, there IS a Santa Claus.

And that's stamp collecting this week. 

I'm Lloyd de Vries, CBS News.

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