CFIB says Canada Post strike injuring Canadian businesses – CUPW says injuries to workers real issue

Above: Local Canada Post workers hit the picket line on Monday as part of nationwide rotating strikes. – Lucie Roy Photo

by Morinville News Staff

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is calling on the federal government to pass back to work legislation to get mail and parcel delivery back on track as the holiday period draws near.

The business organization’s data shows that two-thirds of Canadian small businesses have been negatively affected by the Canada Post strike.

“The rotating strikes have gone on long enough,” said CFIB President Dan Kelly. “A full two-thirds of Canadian small firms have been negatively affected by the strike, and those firms have incurred nearly $3,000 in added costs due to lost orders, late payments and the need to shift to more expensive alternatives.”

CFIB’s data comes from a special survey of its members in the majority of provinces starting Nov. 18. That data found:

87 per cent of small firms viewed Canada Post’s delivery services as important to their business;

67 per cent said their cash flow has been affected by delayed cheques and invoices in the mail;

41 per cent are waiting on the delivery of products or supplies for their business;

35 per cent said their shipments to their customers have been delayed; and,

71 per cent of small firms supported back to work legislation.

“Small firms call on Canada Post unions to move ahead with a deal to ensure the Corporation can once again become a reliable provider of delivery services at a reasonable cost,” Kelly said. “If not, CFIB calls on government to pass back to work legislation by week’s end.”

CFIB was not the only organization calling for an end to the strike. Last week, online auction site eBay called on the Canadian government to do something as well.

Health and Safety at issue

But it is the injury of its workers that CUPW is concerned about, some of that due to the increase in packages brought about by online shopping.

CUPW national president Mike Palecek, in commenting on the union’s rejection of the latest offer, has said the offer does not reflect the union’s concerns on health and safety. The union continues to seek proposals to deal with what it says are an escalating number of injuries at Canada Post.

CUPW cite 30,774 injuries to CUPW members over the past four years, 14,751 of which were disabling.

To remedy injuries the union is looking for the end of multiple bundle delivery, a reduction in overburdening, an update to parcel volumes and an adjustment to routes that are more frequent, a correction to the formula for the percentage of coverage and mail volume index, and a limit on compulsory overtime.

Canada Post’s latest request was to put the strike on hold with a cooling off period until after the busy Christmas season. That offer came with a $1000 per worker bonus to get back to work until January.

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