Union: Is Canada Post creating a crisis?

From the Canadian Union of Postal Workers:

Canada Post claimed its mail volumes dropped significantly during the Canadian Union of Postal Workers’ rotating strikes. That was the excuse it gave for shutting down delivery and imposing a nationwide lockout. But now piles of backlogged mail are awaiting delivery.

The Canadian Postal Service Charter sets out government expectations for delivery standards. According to those standards, Canada Post must deliver lettermail within specific timelines. However, letter carriers are not being allowed to meet delivery standards for all of the addresses on their routes. Postal workers are also reporting they are being forced to deliver out-of-date flyers rather than bills and cheques, setting themselves up to be blamed by an angry public. Reports are reaching CUPW from all over – large urban centres as well as smaller communities – about Canada Post management’s ongoing disruption of postal service.

The CUPW is concerned that decisions made by Canada Post senior management to first lock out and then delay delivery will be blamed on postal workers. This pattern of behaviour on the part of Canada Post management leads to the question: is Canada Post deliberately creating a crisis?

via CUPW – 2011-07-06 – Is Canada Post creating a crisis?.

Did Harper kill Canada Post deal?

From the Toronto Star:

OTTAWA—Backroom negotiations aimed at getting Canada Post workers back on the job produced at least two separate deals that came close to ending the political filibuster on Parliament Hill and the labour stoppage, the Star has learned.

But the deals fell through — including an apparent agreement between Canada Post and its workers — and insiders are pointing the finger at the Prime Minister’s Office as the reason.

New Democrats have accused Prime Minister Stephen Harper of taking a hard line in the Canada Post dispute to send a signal to other public sector unions as he girds for federal belt-tightening.

“Obviously the (Prime Minister’s Office) got involved in there. I believe that Stephen Harper wanted to send a message across the country,” said New Democrat MP Yvon Godin.

Full story: Backroom talks came close to ending postal standoff – thestar.com.

Union claim could chart ‘new territory’ in Canadian Labour Law: Expert

Letters and bills may be returning to your mailbox, but the union representing Canada’s postal workers says this fight is far from over.

The 15-member national executive board of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers has decided to take the federal government to court over last week’s back-to-work legislation.

Kevin Banks, a Law professor at Queen’s University, said, "this is a new area of the law and it’ll be interesting to see how it plays out."

He said the claim will likely be based on a 2007 Supreme Court decision about "B.C. Health Services."

Full story: Montreal Gazette: Union claim could chart ‘new territory’ in Canadian Labour Law: Expert.

Canada Post promises mail delivery Tuesday

Canadian homes and businesses will start receiving mail again Tuesday now that legislation forcing 48,000 locked-out postal workers back to their jobs has become law, Canada Post says.

Post offices that were closed during the labour dispute will start to reopen Tuesday as well, while mailboxes will be unsealed starting Monday, the Crown corporation said.

via Canada Post promises mail delivery Tuesday – Politics – CBC News.

CUPW: Workers’ Rights Take a Big Hit Under Harper’s Majority Government

OTTAWA – The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) says the Harper government has sent a message to all workers with its unjust and punitive bill legislating postal workers back to work.

“The government is clearly willing to side with employers to grind down wages and working conditions,” said CUPW National President Denis Lemelin. “Its decision to use back-to-work legislation in the Canada Post and Air Canada disputes was not neutral. The Conservatives have shown themselves to be very anti-worker after only two months of majority government.”

Lemelin said the government’s assertion that its legislation was necessary to protect the economy is illogical. He said postal workers had offered to return to work. “The government has attacked our right to freely negotiate the conditions we work under,” said Lemelin. “It appears that only markets and employers will have freedoms in this country.”

“The union’s struggle for safe work, decent jobs and pensions will continue in spite of this unjust and punitive bill. Fortunately, the government can’t legislate away our determination to fight for our rights,” said Lemelin.

Lemelin added that postal workers are very grateful for the support they received from people all across the country and opposition Members of Parliament, especially members of the New Democratic Party (NDP) who eloquently defended free collective bargaining for 58 hours straight. He said the NDP’s filibuster was successful in provoking a resumption of negotiations between CUPW and Canada Post over the last few days, but that the negotiations had ultimately failed.

“Canada Post was uncompromising from the moment Harper’s government introduced back-to-work legislation,” said Lemelin.

via CUPW – 2011-06-25 – Workers’ Rights Take a Big Hit Under Harper’s Majority Government.