Postal bill to partially deregulate Canada Post is premature and potentially dangerous



    OTTAWA, Oct. 30 /CNW Telbec/ - "The federal government has proposed
legislation which could undermine Canada Post's ability to provide universal
postal service, particularly in rural and remote parts of our country. They
have made this major move without conducting a proper review of the post
office," said Deborah Bourque, National President of the Canadian Union of
Postal Workers (CUPW).
    On Monday, the government introduced Bill C-14, an act to amend the
Canada Post Corporation Act. If approved, this legislation would partially
deregulate Canada Post by removing international letters from Canada Post's
exclusive privilege to deliver letters. Canada Post was provided with an
"exclusive privilege" to collect, transmit and deliver letters, including
international letters, in order to finance the corporation's universal service
obligation. The corporation estimates that international mailers already
siphon off $60 to $80 million dollars per year in business.
    "We are opposed to this partial deregulation and concerned that it could
open the door to further deregulation," said Bourque. "Furthermore, we do not
understand why the government would take such a big step prior to conducting a
thorough review of Canada Post."
    "The exclusive privilege should not be dealt with as a side issue."
    Bourque said the privilege should be examined within the context of the
post office's mandate, as it was during the last mandate review of Canada Post
in 1996.
    A mandate review had been expected. Minister Lawrence Cannon announced in
May 2007 that he was considering doing a review of the Crown corporation for
the first time in eleven years.
    "We think the public should have an opportunity to discuss this
fundamental change before Parliament proceeds," said Bourque.




For further information:

For further information: Richard McGrath, Communications Specialist,
Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW), (613) 236-7230 ext. 7914,
rmcgrath@cupw-sttp.org


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