Negative local reaction to Canada Post announcement

Tyler
Tyler Clarke
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Facing a significant postage price jump and the end of home mail delivery, some Prince Albert residents are reacting to Canada Post’s recent announcement with negativity and concern.

 

Door-to-door delivery is on the chopping block, Canada Post announced this week.

Walking to a central mail kiosk instead of one’s mailbox “would be a little difficult in this kind of weather,” Rubena Wenzel said in reaction to the news.

At 99 years of age, Wenzel served as “Mary” during this year’s Two Miles for Mary seniors transportation radioathon fundraiser.

“For seniors, I do think door-to-door service is just about a necessity,” Prince Albert Heritage Senior Centre president Bill Norman said.

“They have a hard job, especially in the wintertime, on icy streets going to a central area to pick up their mail.”

Although Norman said that he advocates for the continuation of door-to-door delivery, judging from recent new reports it appears to be becoming a thing of the past.

Anticipating a $1 billion deficit by 2020, Canada Post is trying to pave a way for the future in a difficult financial time, Canada Post spokesperson Anick Losier said.

“What we’re trying to do is make sure that we’re a long-term, viable company, and one that doesn’t take away from people’s taxes.

Although Canada Post estimates the elimination of between 6,000 and 8,000 jobs within the next five years, Losier said that it’s too early to say how this will affect the Prince Albert operation.

“The five-point plan does include some operational efficiencies that we’re going to be seeking, and we’ve been doing that for years now and will continue to do that,” she summarized.

Job cuts will be done through attrition, she said, noting that with between 2,000 and 3,000 people retiring every year for the next five years they’ll be able to eliminate positions without laying off people.

They have a hard job, especially in the wintertime, on icy streets going to a central area to pick up their mail. Bill Norman

“That doesn’t matter,” Coun. Don Cody said of arbitration, adding that at the end of the  day, there are still fewer jobs available not only in Prince Albert but across the nation.

“They’ve already given us a devastating blow by taking the mail sorting to Saskatoon,” he said, citing a job shift that was announced earlier this year -- a change that was also done through attrition.

“Do people not mean anything in this world anymore? I guess people don’t mean anything -- it’s all dollars and cents.”

In addition to Canada Post phasing out mailbox delivery in favour of centralized hubs, the cost of postage is set to jump from 63 cents for a typical envelope to 85 cents by March 31.

City of Prince Albert finance director Joe Day reports that the city sends out about 140,000 pieces of mail per year, and that the 12-cent increase will result in an additional cost to the city of about $17,000.

“We’ll have to rethink how we do business, because we still do a lot of business by mail,” Mayor Greg Dionne said.

Although Dionne expressed support for the city switching from quarterly to monthly utility bills, the postage price hike is having him re-examine his position.

“Not only is it going to up our costs, there’ll be a totally different picture out there,” Dionne said, adding that the city’s mailing practices will be one of the first items brought up during council’s next meeting in January.

Organizations: Canada Post

Geographic location: Saskatoon

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  • Alice
    December 13, 2013 - 14:42

    Somebody needs to double check the math in this article. Postage is going up .22 cents not .12 cents. That would make the increase for the city closer to 31000.00 not 17000.00.