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November 19, 2018

The Right Honourable Justin Trudeau
Prime Minister of Canada
House of Commons
Ottawa, Ontario
Canada K1A 0A6

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau,

On behalf of the Ontario Federation of Labour, Canada’s largest provincial federation, and our 54 affiliates, we are calling on your government to initiate the changes needed at Canada Post that will bring about real negotiations to settle long outstanding issues.

It is not often that workers exercise their right to strike but when they do, it is because they are standing up to injustice in the workplace.

In this case, members of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) are taking a stand – a stand for stronger health and safety protections, gender equality, and the preservation of decent full-time, middle class jobs – at a great personal sacrifice.

The reality is that working conditions of postal workers have deteriorated over the last decade partly because Canada Post has failed to properly address the significant increase in parcel volumes and the subsequent burden it has placed on workers. Canada Post must also address workplace injuries, which over the last two years, have increased by nearly 45 per cent. Today, the injury rate for a letter carrier is eight times the average of the rest of the federal sector.

Other key demands for postal workers include job security, an end to forced overtime and overburdening, service expansion, and equality for rural and suburban mail carriers (e.g., pay for all hours worked, guaranteed minimum hours, and job security).

Instead of addressing these systemic issues, Canada Post – and by extension, your government – has proposed solutions that will perpetuate and entrench insecure employment, an inadequate and unfair wage structure, and the discriminatory treatment of female rural and suburban mail carriers.

Your government has an opportunity to do the right thing: to help build vibrant communities by expanding postal services, to preserve decent working conditions, and to serve the future needs of residents across the country by building on this important public service.

It is important to recognize that the decisions you make today will not only affect the working conditions of postal workers across this country, but it will also define the working conditions of every worker in this country – for generations to come.

Sincerely,

Chris Buckley, President, Ontario Federation of Labour
Patty Coates, Secretary-Treasurer, Ontario Federation of Labour
Ahmad Gaied, Executive Vice-President, Ontario Federation of Labour

Cc:
Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Public Services and Procurement, Government of Canada
HonourablePatty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour
Jessica L. McDonald,Chair of the Board of Directors and Interim President and Chief Executive Officer, Canada Post Corporation
Mike Palecek, National President, Canadian Union of Postal Workers

COPE 343

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