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Protect rural post: CUPW urges municipalities to support efforts to protect and enhance Canada Post

By Valerie MacDonald, Northumberland Today

ALNWICK/HALDIMAND -- A representative from the Canadian Union of Postal Workers is asking municipal councils to write the Prime Minister of Canada in order to "retain, enhance and expand" postal services.

The national campaign co-ordinator of the Save Canada Post campaign, Dianne Mitchell, is scheduled to address Alnwick/Haldimand councillors Thursday afternoon.

In a written presentation provided to councillors ahead of her appearance, Mitchell reviews how almost 600 municipalities passed resolutions prior to the 2015 federal election condemning service cuts like the loss of home mail delivery.

"So great was the backlash that the loss of door-to-door- delivery became a significant issue in the 2015 federal election," she states. "Both Liberals and the NDP made commitments to stop the conversion (to community mail boxes) and restore home delivery."

Following the conversion moratorium imposed by the newly elected Liberal Federal Government, (which included those community mail boxes that had already been installed in Port Hope and were slated for use starting November, 2015) there was a review of Canada Post.

The Standing Committee on Government Operations held 22 community meetings and produced a report containing 45 recommendations, the report continues.

Mitchell's report highlights four recommendations that include: the preservation of post offices including franchise postal outlets frequent in rural areas, as well as halting closure of rural post offices; examining local versus centralized mail processing; increasing Canada Post's retail services and looks at ways of becoming a community hub responding to "the local needs of its surrounding community."

(Ideas about creating a community hub range from the introduction of banking, Internet and charging stations, as well a check on the elderly through the postal offices.)

There is already an "elder check" taking place in Prince Edward County between that regional's Community Care and mail carriers, the report notes.

"On behalf of the Canadian Union of Post Workers, we ask that (Alnwick Haldimand) council help create the future and send a letter to"¦Prime Minister Justin Trudeau supporting the recommendations of the Standing Committee to retain, enhance, and expand these important postal services" including the retention of door-to-door mail service, states the union campaign representative.