By CBSLA Staff

SANTA MONICA (CBSLA) — As Postmaster General Louis DeJoy Friday defended changes he made to the U.S. Postal Service to Congress, area residents spoke about what they have been experiencing.

Dr. Wayne Johnson, a Santa Monica resident, said he and his neighbors have all been experiencing delays from USPS in recent weeks.

“Our mail has been delayed here for two to three days,” he said. “A lot of our bills have not gotten here on time. Some checks that I’m owed have not been here on time.”

But Orange County veteran Jeffery Ebner, the delays pose a more serious threat since he depends on the postal service to deliver medications for cholesterol and diabetes from the VA. In the past few months, he said his medications have arrived more than 15 days late, causing him to run out of one of his medications.

“I’ve got a friend that’s got cancer and he’s having problems getting his medicines,” he said. “And another friend of mine who has heart condition and he’s having problems getting his.”

But, despite the delays, customers said they did not blame the mail carriers, but rather those in charge who have taken sorting machines and mail boxes out of circulation and has reportedly altered traditional distribution methods.

“The carriers may not be receiving all of their mail or being instructed to leave some mail behind,” Keisha Lewis, of the National Association of Letter Carriers, said.

The post office did not immediately respond to a request for comment, though earlier this week DeJoy released a statement that said, in part:

“Even with the challenges of keeping our employees and customers safe and healthy as they operate amid a pandemic, we will deliver the nation’s election mail on time and within our well-established service standards.

But Johnson said, between now and November, people still needed their medications, social security checks and other necessities delivered by mail.

“It makes me very, very angry,” he said. “And I think it makes most Americans very angry.”

A protest is scheduled in front of the Santa Monica Post Office on Wilshire Boulevard and 12th Street Saturday as part of a nationwide day of demonstration.