Much like it takes a little longer for mail to get here, a rotating strike involving postal workers has finally arrived in Osoyoos.
The 10 unionized workers at Canada Post’s Osoyoos outlet were off the job this morning, joining fellow workers from across the South Okanagan as the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) continues its job action.
“There’ve been rotating strikes for almost three weeks and this is the South Okanagan’s turn,” explained Marilyn Gauthier, a union employee from Penticton who mustered the picket line in Osoyoos this morning.
“It started at seven o’clock and we’ll go until seven tomorrow unless we’re told otherwise. So there will be no mail delivery in Osoyoos — no sorting, no nothing.”
Today’s job action in BC also impacted postal outlets in Cranbrook, Kamloops, Quesnel, Vernon and Williams Lake, Canada Post is reporting.
The job action in BC involves about 425 CUPW members.
“Since October 22, CUPW’s rotating strikes have now shut down Canada Post’s operations in more than 150 communities across the country,” Canada Post says on its website.
“Canada Post has been working hard to minimize the service impact to Canadians, but the union’s escalating strikes continue to cause backlogs in our national, integrated delivery network. As a result, customers could see delays of several days.”
CUPW is looking for a national overtime ban for both of its major bargaining units at Canada Post. Postal workers, no matter what their job at Canada Post, will not work more than an eight-hour day and not more than a 40-hour week, the union says.
“Overburdening, overtime and overwork are all major issues in this round of bargaining. Until Canada Post negotiators’ address it, we can solve it for ourselves in the meantime,” said Mike Palecek, CUPW’s national president.
CUPW members are still without agreements for Urban Postal Operations and Rural and Suburban Mail Carriers (RSMC) bargaining units after almost a year of negotiations.
Negotiations between Canada Post and its unions continues, with a mediator assigned to the matter provided four additional days to work towards an agreement.