Postal workers rally in Ottawa against cuts to jobs and services
Thousands of Canadian postal workers gathered on Parliament Hill Sunday to oppose cuts to jobs and services.
In December, Canada Post announced door-to-door mail service would be phased out over the next five years, instead changing to delivery to community mail boxes. Those changes mean up to 8,000 Canada Post employees are expected to lose their jobs.
More than 1,000 letter carriers from Montreal boarded buses to join the protest in Ottawa, arguing that the cuts not only impact their jobs, but also affect the most vulnerable Canadians.
“It's like telling a person of age that their contribution building this country no longer warrants them the small privilege of receiving their mail at their door. It's ridiculous,” said letter carrier Enrico Carfagnini.
Letter carrier Guillaume Brodeur agreed.
“I know there are a lot of old people, and it handicaps them. We all see what kind of winters we have, especially this year. For those people, it's a huge problem for them,” he said,
Postal employees from across Montreal packed into buses headed to Ottawa, where they stood together, asking the government to change its mind.
Workers’ unions for across the country are standing in support of the postal workers; a fact political scientist Bruce Hicks said won't necessarily work in their favour.
“Being tough on unions, being tough on over-privileged government employees, is actually a good thing for a Conservative government to be seen to be doing. The only thing that would stop this now is if the public itself got upset,” said Hicks, who is a visiting fellow at the Glendon School of Public & International Affairs at York University in Toronto.
Canada Post cited changing habits and technology behind the changes, adding that if it doesn't restructure, it will continue to post losses.