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Canada Post still delivering amid COVID-19 pandemic

Citynews 1130 Vancouver

Last Updated Mar 20, 2020 at 12:24 pm PDT

FILE _ The Canada Post logo is seen on the outside the company's Pacific Processing Centre, in Richmond, B.C. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
Summary

Postal workers are still delivering mail and packages

Canada Post advises not to approach carriers

Union members staggering start times, mindful of social distancing

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Canada Post workers are still delivering the mail, despite the coronavirus pandemic.

Blair Bancroft, vice-president of the local Canadian Union of Postal Workers, said members will continue to deliver mail and packages, adding it’s important to do so now more than ever with many people self-isolating.

“We are self-isolating, if we need to, we are using social distancing, we are, you know, hand-sanitizing, hand-washing, masks, gloves,” he added.

“Everything that physicians and the public health authority is recommending that we do, we are following to the best of our ability.”

While postal workers are trying their best to limit the spread of coronavirus, Bancroft said others need to do their part, as well.

“We just ask that you, perhaps, not approach your letter carrier, let them come up and deliver the mail,” he said.

The union also asks customers to regularly clean their mail receptacles, as well as elevators and entrance ways, including door handles at entry points.

Blair adds health and safety was an important issue for postal workers in the last round of bargaining and Canada Post is working with the union as best it can.

“They’re staggering start times, they’re trying to limit floor talks and have social spacing and doing what they can to limit the amount of people that are on the work floor at one given time.”

Doug Ettinger, president and CEO of Canada Post, says in a release that employees who can work from home are now doing so, but that’s not a possibility for most of them.

“First, I want to reassure you that in every decision we are making around COVID-19, our number one priority is the health and safety of our employees,” he says.

“We are actively following the guidelines and recommendations of the Public Health Agency of Canada, the lead for Canada for COVID-19.”

He also says Canada Post’s mission remains to serve all Canadians.

“We will face challenges. We will be tested. But we will deliver on our mission,” he adds.

“The nature of our business is in the field. Our people and delivery trucks are a daily presence in neighbourhoods across the country. Our post offices are in virtually every community. And our people are a proud part of the communities they serve. They are doing an incredible job in very difficult circumstances.”

Canada Post has suspended normal delivery guarantees for its parcel service.

“Delivering safely without overburdening our people in these extraordinary circumstances may take a little more time,” Ettinger says.

“Our post offices play a vital role in the community and will remain open. Some locations may have to temporarily adjust hours or briefly close due to local circumstances, but we will monitor, respond and inform customers.”