CUPW Moratorium Could Keep Red Flags Flying on Rural Boxes

    OTTAWA, Feb. 28 /CNW Telbec/ - "The red flags on rural mailboxes need not
go down forever," said Deborah Bourque, National President of the Canadian
Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) in announcing CUPW's call for a moratorium to
keep both rural delivery and safety.
    CUPW wants Canada Post to stop taking away rural roadside delivery until
the corporation has thoroughly consulted and explored all available delivery
options with rural residents and local union officials. The union also wants
Canada Post to go back to locations that have lost roadside mailbox service
after improper consultation.
    "Rural residents are frustrated and outraged because they're not being
consulted before learning their roadside delivery has been switched to a
community mailbox or an in-town post office box," said Bourque.
    CUPW's call for a national moratorium coincides with meetings that
Atlantic regional representatives of the union have set up for this week with
members of Parliament (MPs) from the Atlantic to discuss rural delivery.
    Rural residents living outside Charlottetown recently received post cards
from Canada Post informing them about upcoming safety assessments. Four days
earlier they received letters stating they had already failed the assessments
and were having their delivery switched to community mailboxes. "Pads were
already laid down for the community mailboxes before we got the post cards,"
said Edith Ling of North Winsloe, Prince Edward Island. "One pad was laid
three feet from the road on a blind curve at an intersection. What kind of
safety assessment was that? A lot of folks around here were just handed keys
to a community mailbox two days before they were moved and were told they
failed for no other reason other than they were on a road with double lines."
    "Rural residents in Atlantic Canada and elsewhere see Canada Post's
safety review as the corporation's excuse to justify large-scale conversions
of rural boxes to community mailboxes," said Bourque. "Safety is definitely a
concern, but we're not convinced the review is being done properly."

For further information:

For further information: Richard McGrath, Communications Specialist
(CUPW), (613) 222-3952 (cell)

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