CENTRE WELLINGTON - The union representing Canada Post workers is asking for support from rural municipalities to expand services, which it feels will help provide solutions to climate change, lack of access to proper internet and the need for banking service in rural areas.
Derek Richmond, a representative for Canadian Union of Postal Workers, delegated at Monday’s regular council meeting about proposed service expansion throughout the province.
“We’re trying to reach out to all county municipalities so we can raise awareness for our proposed service expansion. I’m asking the council to support our resolution, so we can send the resolution to the federal government,” said Richmond in a phone interview.
“We want the federal government to see that all these municipalities have supported our resolution and for them to realize that municipalities can utilize Canada Post infrastructure to expand services in rural communities.”
In 2016, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers, with a coalition of allies, launched the initiative Delivering Community Power.
Previously, Richmond and his team have sent out correspondence to municipalities, asking for support. Now, however, with the effects of climate change becoming deadlier and the pandemic revealing many urgent needs for vulnerable communities, Richmond and his team are delegating their way through rural Ontario. The Canadian Union of Postal Workers have deemed its proposal urgent.
“Canada Post is planning to expand our services in order to support and help our communities. We’re proposing to implement a senior check-in program, among other things, where our letter carriers can check in on vulnerable residents while they are out on duty,” explained Richmond.
Other service expansion proposals are:
- Establish a robust network of electric vehicle charging stations
- Develop postal banking as many rural municipalities do not have a bank branch
- Using electric vehicles while delivering mail
- Creating community hubs through the extensive network of post offices
Coun. Stephen Kitras wondered whether Canada Post would need funding from the township or not.
“Canada Post is self-sufficient, so all the funding is funded through our company and not the federal government. I believe that if community hubs were to come to a municipality, I think it’s vital that the municipality have some input on what needs to be included in the hub,” explained Richmond.
Council received Richmond’s delegation for information. They did not make a decision on whether they would support it or not.