72-hour notice of strike latest threat to mail service; resolution needed
Toronto, August 26, 2016 – With Canada Post’s biggest union giving 72-hour notice of a strike but negotiations ongoing, the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is calling for a speedy resolution to keep the mail moving.
Although the union has suggested it wants to avoid a strike, the notice means a work stoppage of some kind could happen. Small business owners want some finality to the negotiations and many are already making other plans. CFIB is doing all it can to help small businesses by providing alternatives for businesses that need them, opening up its member-only ZoomShipR service to all independent Canadian businesses until October 1st.
“We’re seeing a lot of our members setting up back-up plans with alternate shipping services,” said CFIB president Dan Kelly. “Many small businesses rely heavily on Canada Post and the current dispute is causing a lot of uncertainty and scrambling. CFIB's special ZoomShipR arrangements can be accessed by signing up for an account.”
One of the key sticking points in the dispute relates to pension liabilities at Canada Post, which management is seeking to address by offering new hires a defined contribution plan rather than a defined benefit plan.
“Like other government agencies, Canada Post needs to get its pension costs under control,” added Kelly. “We urge the union to compromise to ensure the long-term sustainability of Canada Post. The longer the uncertainty drags on, the more Canada Post customers, including small businesses, are going to find other ways to accept payments and ship goods. And those customers may never come back.”
CFIB is Canada’s largest association of small- and medium-sized businesses with 109,000 members across every sector and region.