Rotating Canada Post strikes have hit the Dryden area. Employees were picketing in front of the Post Office earlier this morning, as they continue the fight for better working conditions.

“We’re hoping for an agreement to happen here at the last minute, before any legislation is put forward. Support us if you can. It’s not an issue where we want to get a million dollars, it’s about our jobs and our safety,” said Canada Post worker Brad Pareis.

The strikes began five weeks ago, when crown corporation Canada Post and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers couldn’t reach an agreement after over a year of negotiations. Each rotating strike is meant to last only 24 hours per city.

Yesterday, the federal government gave notice that they are prepared to legislate employees back to work. Labour Minister Patty Hajdu says that 48 hours notice was required before introducing the legislation, but that doesn’t mean that the federal government will follow-through with the move.

The union has warned of a legal battle with the federal government if the legislation passes, calling the move “unconstitutional”.

“One of the issues has been over-burdening. As we’ve transitioned from mainly letters to mainly parcels, it’s a lot more weight. Our injury is about 5.4 times the rest of the federal sector. There’s a lot of workplace injuries to be concerned about.”

According to CUPW statistics, workplace injuries have increased by 43 per cent over the past two years. Workers are also fighting for pay equity, and a national overtime ban that would limit work weeks to 40 hours.

Earlier this week, Canada Post said that Canadians can expect delays of mail delivery into 2019 as a result of the strikes. However, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers challenged that claim, saying that backlogs have been exaggerated.

On Monday, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers turned down an offer for a holiday-based pause on the strikes, with a $1,000 bonus for each Canada Post worker.

Their last two-year agreement contract was signed during a review of Canada Post in 2016, and the previous contract was a four-year deal that included rollbacks.

Rotating strikes hit the Kenora area at the end of October.

For more information:
Posties staying positive

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