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Philadelphia Postal Workers Union President Blames Hiring Freeze, No Allotted Overtime For USPS Delivery Delays

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- It's been two weeks since Christmas and yet some are still waiting on Santa to deliver their packages. The holidays are over, but some are still waiting for packages from the USPS. It's getting to the point where they're starting to lose their patience.

The post office is turning packages left and right, yet the load doesn't seem to get any lighter.

"Mail backed up to the ceilings," Nick Casselli, the local American Postal Workers Union president, said.

Casselli says postal workers are doing the best they can, but with a hiring freeze and no allotted overtime, packages are simply backed up.

"I looked into one of the containers, two-day priority mail, and the dates were Dec. 1, Dec. 5, Dec. 10," Casselli said.

That's a huge complaint by many, paying for a service that doesn't deliver.

Eyewitness News morning anchor Jim Donovan received his priority one-day delivery 20 days later, and there are similar stories across the region.

"Mine was shipped mid-November and it said it was actually delivered Dec. 3," Anand Patel said. "I reached out to USPS and I filed a complaint and I got no word back until I just found it on my doorstep actually yesterday morning."

One package from Nordstrom Rack has been en route since Dec. 3. The normal six to nine business days have long passed.

"It's sad just because around the holiday time, people are expecting packages," Patel said.

On its website, the USPS has an alert stating unprecedented volume increases and limited employee availability due to the impacts of COVID-19.

Monica Lewis mailed a package to her mother in Delaware with an expected delivery two weeks later.

"I'm trying to understand why it would go from Pennsylvania to Illinois then to Delaware," Lewis said. "It just doesn't make sense to me."

The Philadelphia Postal Workers Local Union 89 president says these delays are unnecessary.

"I can see this mail being backed up for another six to eight weeks," Casselli said.

CBS News has reported that there are six million packages left behind every day.


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