BRIGHTON, N.Y. (WROC) — Grandparents William and Sandra Brewer have two packages in the mail to their grandkids out in Rhode Island.

“Stockings for the kids, a bunch of different presents, some Christmas crackers,” William said. “And long underwear,” Sandra said.

Normally, they’d pack the car up and make the delivery themselves. This year, they say Christmas is in the hands of the post office.

But there have been problems. One of the packages mailed priority on December 10, due to arrive in Rhode Island on December 14, hasn’t been heard from since. 

“For them to keep saying ‘oh it’s in transit, will be arriving late’, they have no idea where it is,” William says.

The other box, mailed priority on December 14, due to arrive in Rhode Island on December 17, went from Rochester to Springfield, Massachusetts, down to Atlanta, Georgia. It was still there Tuesday night. 

“I’m hoping they ship it back north, but who knows? It’s very confusing,” William said.
“The big boxes are not getting through,” Sandra said.

The Brewers fear their gifts won’t reach their grandkids in time for Christmas. Both say this year, with COVID-19 and so many people not gathering, they suspect the post office wasn’t ready for the onslaught of deliveries. 

“You think they would have understood and planned for that,” William said, with Sandra adding, “People need to be hired possibly to get these packages through.”

William and Sandra Brewer of Brighton

And when it comes to the Rochester distribution center, News 8 viewers have emailed our newsroom complaining of delays there getting mail processed. In a statement, the US Post Office said the following:

“The 640,000 employees of the U.S Postal Service across the nation are proud to provide an essential service to our customers during the pandemic and to meet unprecedented challenges of this extraordinary year. The Northwest Rochester Processing and Distribution Center has faced challenges recently due to COVID-19 at the same time mail volumes have dramatically increased. We have taken steps to address issues caused by the pandemic as we approach our busiest weeks, including hiring seasonal employees and allocating employees to facilities that need additional resources. We are confident that our processing and delivery will return to normal levels quickly. As we do each year, the Postal Service reminds customers to send mail and packages early to avoid glitches. For additional holiday information and resources, including mailing deadlines and packaging tips, check out the USPS holiday newsroom. We thank our customers for their continued support, and we are committed to making sure gifts and cards are delivered on time to celebrate the holidays.”

— Desai Abdul-Razzaaq, Strategic Communications, USPS Corporate Communications

The Brewers say they’re just trying to do the right thing this year by not seeing their daughter and grandchildren due to the pandemic. At least, they’re hoping by Christmas their goodies reach the kids in time. 

“They’re kind of counting on getting surprises from grandma and grandpa,” Sandra said.