Unionized workers at the Canada Post office on Ingram Street in Duncan were on the picket lines on Monday. (Robert Barron/Citizen)

Duncan’s postal workers join national strike

Rotating 24-hour stikes expected to hit four locations each day

Workers from Canada Post’s main office in Duncan on Ingram Street were picketing their work place on Oct. 22

The job action was the first day of rotating strikes across the country that are being carried out by the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, which represents approximately 50,000 Canada Post workers across the country.

The first four locations impacted by the rotating strikes were Edmonton, Windsor, Halifax and Victoria, whose CUPW branch includes Duncan.

The strikes will last for 24 hours, with different locations striking daily.

“Canada Post had the opportunity this weekend to stop any postal disruption on Monday, but instead, as they have for almost a year, they refused to talk about the issues that matter to our members,” said Mike Palecek, CUPW’s national president in a press release.

“Our goal has always been a negotiated settlement, but we will not agree to anything that doesn’t address health and safety, gender equality and good, full-time middle-class jobs.”

Palecek said CUPW opted for rotating strikes to minimize the impact of a postal disruption on customers.

He said mail will still be delivered, although it could be delayed.

According to the union, key demands for postal workers during this round of bargaining include job security, an end to forced overtime and overburdening, and better health and safety measures.

“Job action will continue until Canada Post gets serious about bargaining,” Palecek said.

“They should and can do better. Our members deserve better.”

According to Canada Post, mail and parcels will not be delivered or picked up in Victoria, Edmonton, Windsor and Halifax on Monday.

But the service will resume in these cities on Tuesday.

“Canada Post continues to operate across Canada. We are accepting and delivering mail and parcels in all other locations,” a Canada Post spokesperson said in an interview.

Currently, the rotating strikes only impact Victoria (and Cowichan), Edmonton, Windsor and Halifax, but that could change to other regions if negotiations fail again.

“With rotating strikes, a new location or locations will be striking daily. We have not yet announced where strikes will be held tomorrow,” a union spokesperson said.

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