Skip to comments.Calgary, Edmonton postal workers on strike
Posted on 06/08/2011 6:09:08 AM PDT by rightwingintelligentsia
Calgary and Edmonton are the latest targets in the revolving postal strike as union representatives consider their next moves, including a full-blown national walkout.
The Alberta walkouts began at 10 p.m MT in Edmonton and 9 p.m MT in Calgary Tuesday night.
"The reason why Alberta was chosen is because in the past years we've had serious issues dealing with the employer with respect to staffing here and the level of forced overtime that letter carriers have been having to work," said Bev Ray, Edmonton Canadian Union of Postal Workers local president.
"Alberta has been one of the hardest hit locations across the country with respect to that."
A spokesman for the Canadian Union of Postal Workers says escalation was discussed Tuesday, as it has been every day, but CUPW will continue the less disruptive localized strikes for now.
Canada Post spokesman Jon Hamilton said strikes in Calgary and Edmonton are "completely unnecessary as CUPW has still not responded to our latest offer."
"The people of Alberta should be asking why the union is stopping their mail service when the company is offering wage increases, job security, a defined benefit pension, seven weeks of vacation and more."
(Excerpt) Read more at cbc.ca ...
I'm wondering if some Canadian Freepers could comment on this.
Hi. I live in Calgary, so I guess our mail service will actually be faster than usual today...
I believe Canada Post is a Crown Corporation, owned by the government. However it’s structured, the service still sucks and is getting cut back all the time - they don’t even deliver to plenty of home any more, and haven’t for years. It’s expensive, too, 50-something cents for a first class stamp. Packages are ridiculous. Cheaper than a courier, but at least a courier delivers.
AFAIC they’re merely hastening the demise of the dinosaur service. Damn unions.
I heard jokes many years ago about the Canada Post service being so bad, that a strike would hardly be noticed.
Thanks for the clarification.
LOL! Maybe it should be called “Soonerorlater.”
As if USPS employees never engaged in a wildcat strike.
I have heard from many Canadians that their postal service sucks very badly, even in comparison to ours. A few experiences I’ve had sending mail to Canada would tend to back that up.
I believe the Purolator name and corporation predates the Canada mail contract. It began as a brand name for a high capacity, long lifetime automotive motor oil filter which provides for “pure oil now, pure oil later.” In the USA you don’t see the Purolator logo on slow mail trucks but on fast race cars.
Am a mail sorting clerk and am in union (not crazy about their politics). We are deep in debt and they are trying things like early retirements, and there’s the poss. loss
of Sat. delivery. I don’t know what kind of mismanagement the suits in Washington have been doing, but a very small price increase (44 cents is amazingly cheap for that first ounce—newspapers are $1.50 these days by comparison) could wipe out that debt.
Think of the high price of gas, multiply it by our jeeps and
planes, etc.—I don’t know how much a private company would charge to deliver first class mail, but do consider the various costs. As for strikes, remember the last postal
strike...was it 1970 or something?
Why don’t we go on strike? We’re essential workers and cannot.
Remember Reagan and the air traffic controllers?
Canada is doing something you won’t see in the US: dealing with a postal strike.
...41 years ago...before the current unions existed.
Remember the postal strike of 2005? 1993? 1997? 1979? Of course not, because they didn’t happen. I made those up.
We cannot strike.
True. The current USPS employee union, according to the Wiki article, is a combination of previously existing USPS employee unions.
We cannot strike.
If that's true then how did the strike of 1970 happen? Were federal employee strikes legal in 1970?
This was when the post office was the Post Office Dept. not the US Postal Service
>>The Postal Reorganization Act signed by President Richard Nixon on August 12, 1970, replaced the cabinet-level Post Office Department with the independent United States Postal Service. The Act took effect on July 1, 1971.
>>The U.S. postal strike of 1970 was a groundbreaking two-week strike by federal postal workers in March 1970. President Richard Nixon called out the United States armed forces and the National Guard in an attempt to distribute the mail and break the strike.
The strike led directly to passage of the Postal Reorganization Act of 1970, which modernized the postal service and _provided for collective bargaining_ for postal workers.At the time, postal workers were not permitted by law to engage in collective bargaining. Striking postal workers felt wages were very low, benefits poor and working conditions unhealthy and unsafe. The U.S. Post Office Department’s management was outdated and, according to workers, haphazard. Informal attempts by workers to obtain higher pay and better working conditions had proven fruitle
Also, there were further wildcat strikes by USPS employees in 1978. These strikers were canned.
Ah, well I didn’t start working there till ‘86 and didn’t remember hearing about ‘78.
As for whether or not it was legal to strike in 1970 I looked this up (so from this, it doesn’t look like the
strike was legal, even in the pre-USPS, pre-APWU days;
re-organization turned US Post Office/cabinet level into
USPS; APWU union formed in ‘71):
>>The postal strike was completely different. From the first it was illegal. It did not play by the rules of the game. It fought national and local union leaderships tooth and nail. It was undeterred by appeals to patriotism and national interest. It based itself on the power of the workers, not on the goodwill of the bosses. Far from integrating the workers into the system, the postal struggle opposed its central institutions.
The union I’m in came about from a merger of 5 unions
>>The APWU was founded on July 1, 1971, by a merger of five postal unions. The United Federation of Postal Clerks and the National Postal Union, the two largest unions, and the National Association of Post Office and General Service Maintenance Employees, the National Federation of Motor Vehicle Employees, and the National Association of Special Delivery Messengers.
I also know that my union’s local and the national union were at odds over the most recent contract, which got ratified last month. A two tier pay system—new employees get less benefits, are subject to flexible schedule/ poss. fewer hours/ more likely transfers. There isn’t as much hiring as there used to be but maybe the national APWU was licking its chops over getting more new members.
Union site (which tends to show that union locals do agree with the national union, re: Consolidation of facilities):
>>The Postal Services assault on the nations mail processing network shows no signs of stopping and APWU locals have responded by engaging elected officials, community leaders, and members of the public in the fight to save our service...locals have held public protests, contacted members of Congress, engaged members of the community and elected officials in their efforts, and rallied to save postal facilities. Using material prepared by the national union, members are demanding that the USPS stop cutting service, jobs, and the postal network.
The problem is that in both situations, free alternatives that happen to be practical currently exist. $1.50 to see yesterday's news? No way. Same goes with first class mail. E-mail does a great job and is much quicker... and the bank saves me the cost of stamps by letting me pay bills online.
The main problem the USPS has is not just that 80% of all revenue goes towards labor costs, but it is the fact that as a communications technology, it is obsolete.