According to Canada Post’s Code of Conduct, serving Canadians with both passion and pride is at the forefront of the corporation’s values — though as of late, this service may not extend to your front door. Last year the Crown corporation declared that they would begin phasing out door-to-door mail delivery. Since then, workers of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) have been fighting to save our postal services, and it’s high time more of us chimed in to lend our support.
Those who oppose the corporation’s decision emphasize its lack of public consultation. According to the CUPW, federal politicians and upper management should not decide the company’s fate, but rather the people should determine what services are needed. After all, Canada Post was meant to serve the people.
For some, the service cuts will have considerable consequences. For many of us, making a trip out to a community mailbox may be inconvenient, but it’s doable. For others, however, this will become a daily obstacle. Eliminating door-to-door service will put single parents, elderly, and disabled members of our community in an unfavourable position.
Earlier this year my grandfather suffered a stroke. It left him with balance problems and he often needs assistance when walking for long periods of time. As a 91-year-old who lives alone, getting to and from a community mailbox every day will be difficult for him, as he lives in a part of BC that receives heavy snow during the winter. No one should suffer daily worries about how they’re going to receive their mail.
If we are serious about saving door-to-door delivery, we may want to consider alternative solutions.
On top of the inconvenience, an estimated 8,000 postal workers will lose their jobs as a direct result of the service cutbacks. While the digitization of our society certainly impacts the amount of mail being sent, calling the industry ‘dead’ is a massive exaggeration.
In 2012, Canada Post reported $98 million in profit — not bad for a corporation that is slashing services in the name of fiscal responsibility. The Conservative government has hit public services hard in recent years, and this is why we must take a stand if we are to save our valued Crown corporations like Canada Post.
Rather than eliminating services, we need to consider new options. The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) recently released a report criticizing the current delivery cutbacks. In the report, researcher John Anderson suggests that reformation of the system would be a better idea than dropping door-to-door delivery entirely.
It remains unclear why Canada Post decided to eliminate instead of innovate, but if we are serious about saving door-to-door delivery, then we may want to consider alternative solutions. As the CCPA suggests, there are other options at hand.
The fact that neither the public nor Parliament were consulted before this decision was made shows that Canada Post is not following through on the promise that they made to Canadians. As the CUPW pushes forth a lawsuit against the Crown corporation, I hope that everyone takes some time to consider those most affected by this cutback. Write to your local MP or to Canada Post if you want to see this decision reversed.