May 31, 2011
A lot of people seem to think Canada Post should be dead by now, and they no doubt base this on their personal experience. Many, if not most, of us use email and online banking to cover much of what once use the mail for. So who needs ‘em?
As it turns out, Canada Post — love it or hate it — remains a much needed part of what makes the country tick. In it’s report to Parliament in April 2010, the agency noted that it delivered close to 11 billion pieces of mail to 15 million destinations. It recorded a profit for the 15th consecutive year with net income of $281 million on revenue of $7.3 billion, and an operating margin of 4.9 per cent.
So — lots of mail and lot of money at stake. The trouble is that even though these number are big, they aren’t as big as they used to be. And the numbers are expected to continued to shrink. Canada Post says it faces a 17-per-cent Lettermail volume decline since 2006.
Which leads us to the current impasse between the corporation its unionized workers. Canada Post says it is offering the following:
» Annual wage increases leading to a top rate of $26 per hour for both new and existing employees.
» A defined benefit pension plan for both new and existing employees despite a $3.2-billion solvency deficit.
» Up to seven weeks vacation.
» Job security for both new and existing employees.
My feeling is that workers should take what they can while they can still get it. The day will come when offers like this will be impossible.