Canadian Union of Postal Workers press release:
OTTAWA, Jan. 21 /CNW/ – The union representing 54,000 postal workers has filed for conciliation under the provisions of the Canada Labour Code. A government-appointed conciliator will now attempt to bring the Canadian Union of Postal Workers and Canada Post Corporation to a negotiated settlement. The appointment of a conciliator starts the clock ticking towards a possible strike or lockout by the end of April.
“We’ve taken this action because Canada Post has to move from its hard-line position on demanding significant concessions from our members, even while it continues to post profits and spend money on technological changes,” said Denis Lemelin, CUPW National President and Chief Negotiator.
Among the concessions that Canada Post is demanding is the replacement of postal workers’ sick leave with a short-term disability plan. It is also insisting on new work methods that the union considers unsafe. The new methods have already created huge problems and disruptions of mail service in Winnipeg, where they were first implemented last year. For new hires, the rollbacks include the imposition of a defined contribution pension plan rather than the current defined benefit plan. The union is adamant in its rejection of a two-tier system.
“Canada Post wants to eliminate the current pension plan for new hires now and then impose the new scheme on all employees during a future round of bargaining,” said Lemelin. “We have to take a strong stand now to maintain our public postal service and ensure that future workers will not suffer a deterioration in their working conditions.”
… and the Canada Post press release:
OTTAWA, Jan. 21 /CNW/ – Earlier today, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) filed for conciliation with the Government of Canada as part of ongoing negotiations aimed at reaching a new labour agreement. Collective bargaining between Canada Post and CUPW began on October 21, 2010.
Canada Post welcomes the assistance of a conciliator in our discussions with CUPW, and is optimistic it will help us reach a negotiated settlement. A conciliator meets with both parties, listens to their positions, and helps them work through issues at the bargaining table and find common ground. This process has proven successful in past rounds of labour negotiations. The terms and conditions of the current collective agreement will remain in place throughout conciliation.
Canada Post and its employees across the country have a proud history of serving every Canadian. Mail service will continue as normal while the current conciliation process runs its course and the parties keep working to obtain an agreement.
For more details on the negotiations, please visit www.infopost.ca.