Ottawa – The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) today gave notices to Canada Post that job action will begin next week if agreements cannot be reached for the Urban Postal Operations and Rural and Suburban Mail Carriers (RSMC) bargaining units. If job action is necessary, rotating strikes will begin at 12:01 am, Monday, October 22. Locations have yet to be determined.
Today, your National Executive Board issued what is known as a “72-hour strike notice” to Canada Post for both the RSMC and Urban units. The National Executive Board has decided that the strike will begin on Monday morning, October 22, 2018, at 00:01 should we not have reached negotiated settlements.
Negotiations are continuing in an effort to achieve new collective agreements for both the RSMC and Urban Operations bargaining units. The parties are working long hours to achieve this goal. We remain committed to negotiating collective agreements, as we have since the beginning of this process. We will not issue a 72-hour notice today.
100 days have now passed since Doug Ford and the Conservatives came to power, and their anti-worker, pro-poverty agenda is already in full swing. In just over three months we have already seen cuts to mental health funding, the cancellation of a school repair fund, the privatization of marijuana sales, the cancellation of the Basic Income pilot, and the proposed repeal of Bill 148, along with a freezing of the minimum wage.
Our public post office distributes government cheques that are a fundamental part of the social safety net. We do not want pensioners and those with low-income to suffer if the union is locked out or forced to strike. After all, our dispute over contract issues should be directed at Canada Post, not the most vulnerable members of our society. In addition, your union wants to make sure that live animals are not trapped in the mail system during a work disruption, as they were in 2011.
Your negotiating committee worked hard all weekend in an attempt to get a negotiated collective agreement. Unfortunately, many key issues remain unresolved. We made some progress but we still have a long way to go to get a good settlement.
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Canada needs a postal bank. Thousands of rural towns and villages in our country do not have a bank, but many of them have a post office that could provide financial services. As well, nearly two million Canadians desperately need an alternative to payday lenders. A postal bank could be that alternative. Download and sign the petition urging the Government of Canada to instruct Canada Post to add postal banking, with a mandate for financial inclusion.