Senator Casey Received Evidence from Northeastern Pennsylvania Postal Workers Even as Postmaster General DeJoy Pledged to End Delays. Photos Show Priority Mail Delayed Two Weeks.
Scranton, PA - Today, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) revealed new evidence of Postal Service sabotage by the Trump Administration. Senator Casey’s office received new photos from postal workers in Northeastern Pennsylvania who are concerned about the Administration’s continued scheme to delay the mail. Contrary to claims by Postmaster DeJoy that he would reverse policy changes that delayed mail, the photos show mail continuing to pile up as seniors, businesses and families await vital correspondence.
The photos, including evidence of Priority Mail being delayed for two weeks, can be viewed here.
On September 25, 2020, delayed priority mail for nine Northeastern PA zip codes was found in the Scranton USPS facility. Approximately 30 to 35 large mail containers loaded with priority mail, dating back to at least September 17, were re-routed from the Lehigh Valley plant to the Scranton location. As of October 5, there were at least five tractor trailer loads of delayed mail sent from the Lehigh Valley facility.
“Postmaster General DeJoy promised to reverse changes that were slowing the mail, but the evidence is clear that his only policy is delay and deny,” Senator Casey said. “The continued delays in mail are unacceptable and the evidence compiled in these photos demand answers now.”
The full text of Senator Casey’s letter can be seen below:
The Honorable Louis DeJoy
United States Postal Service
475 L’Enfant Plaza SW
Washington, DC 20260
Dear Postmaster General DeJoy:
I write to follow up on my letter of September 1, 2020 asking you to return sorting machines to Pennsylvania facilities that USPS staff told me caused significant mail delays across the Commonwealth. When I visited the Scranton mail sorting facility in August, I was informed that two sorting machines had recently been removed. My office just received the attached photos that show piles of delayed mail at the Scranton mail sorting facility. These pictures are alarming and I seek immediate explanations for this delayed mail and information on whether mail is being delayed across the Commonwealth and the Nation.
I continue to hear concerns from Pennsylvanians who are suffering adverse consequences from delayed mail delivery. These delays did not begin with the onset of the COVID-19. Instead, delays began after you began to implement operational changes across the USPS.
As Postmaster General, you have a responsibility to ensure your actions are in the best interests of the Postal Service and those it serves. If it was not clear before, it should be clear now: your untested service and delivery changes are not working and should be rescinded. To date you have continually avoided answering questions about the magnitude of delays that have greatly impacted my constituents. I once again urge you to rescind your previous orders, return the machines that were removed and ensure that the Postal Service is able to meet the needs of constituents.
I also ask that you answer the following questions:
- A Scranton postal worker asserted that, as of 9/25, there were dozens of large mail containers of priority mail dating back to 9/17 in the Scranton plant, which had been re-routed from Lehigh due to capacity problems at the Lehigh facility. Please confirm whether or not this has occurred, as well as an explanation for it and the ultimate timeliness of this mail. Is mail still delayed at the Scranton facility?
- The attached photos and briefings from a USPS worker in PA paint a picture of significant mail delays months after you instituted operational changes. This is in stark contrast to your claim of a temporary “dip” in service. Can you explain this discrepancy?
- You have testified that there are not widespread mail delays, but instead there has only been a “dip” in service. Does this “dip” in service continue? If so, please provide more details on the extent of the delays, how you are addressing them, and whether and when you expect this dip in mail timeliness to end.
- Under questioning from the House of Representatives, you indicated that you had not ordered the removal of mail sorting machines, but you did not identify who gave the order. Now that you have had over a month to find an answer, who ordered the removal of the sorting machines?
- You claimed you are unable to adhere to a court order requiring you to return some of the sorting machines that were removed. Reports have indicated that some machines are being reassembled or returned in Delaware and New Jersey. Will you be returning any machines in Pennsylvania? If not, are you pursuing alternatives, such as new machines, in order to return the timeliness of mail delivery to the level it was before your intervention?
- You testified before the Senate that you did not yet have a detailed plan to ensure the timely delivery of election mail. Do you now have that plan, and would you share it?
I appreciate your immediate attention to this matter.
Robert P. Casey, Jr.
United States Senator
Ellie Rushing, A few USPS plants are reinstalling mail sorting machines. But in Philly, more changes that could cause delays are happening., Inquirer (Oct. 1, 2020), https://inquirer.com/news/pennsylvania/postal-service-delays-philadelphia-usps-mail-sorting-machines-20201001.html.