Idle Canada Post trucks sit in the parking lot of the Saint-Laurent sorting facility in Montreal as rotating strikes hit the area on Thursday November 15, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

Canada Post calls for ‘cooling off’ period to allow for mediated talks

The proposal came as Canada Post workers continued their rotating strikes Monday after rejecting the Crown agency’s latest offer.

Canada Post proposed a “cooling off” period with its striking postal workers Monday as pressure mounts to resolve the ongoing labour dispute ahead of the busy Christmas delivery season.

In a statement, the Crown corporation agreed with a proposal from the Canadian Union of Postal Workers to bring another mediator into the ongoing contract dispute — but with a catch.

It said it wants CUPW members to put down their picket signs until the end of January while talks are on, and offered a special payment of up to $1,000 for each member if there is no labour disruption before the so-called cooling off period ends.

“With the rotating strikes, resulting backlogs, and the massive Black Friday and cyber Monday volumes that will arrive within days, we are trying everything we can to work together with the union — urgently — to deliver the holidays to Canadians,” Jessica McDonald, chair of the board of directors and interim president and CEO of Canada Post, said in the statement.

“This proposal also includes a way for the parties to resolve their differences and these negotiations.”

It wasn’t immediately clear if the union would agree to the offer, which came with a deadline of 5 p.m. Monday.

Canada Post said it would start talks “with a jointly-agreed, government-appointed mediator,” while reinstating both collective agreements with CUPW during the cooling off period.

If an agreement is not reached by Jan. 31, the corporation says a mediator would provide recommendations for settlement. If not adopted by the parties, it said binding arbitration would be introduced.

The proposal came as Canada Post workers continued their rotating strikes Monday after rejecting the Crown agency’s latest offer and requesting the government appoint a mediator to help end the ongoing dispute.

Read more: CUPW requests mediator as deadline for Canada Post offer expires without deal

Read more: Liberals to act quickly if Saturday midnight deal deadline breached: source

The union had let pass a time-sensitive proposal from Canada Post meant to stop the strikes affecting about 42,000 urban employees and 8,000 rural and suburban carriers.

A spokeswoman for Labour Minister Patty Hajdu wouldn’t say whether Ottawa would oblige the request for a mediator, but indicated it was a good sign that both sides remained committed to finding a solution.

On Saturday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a last-minute plea to the two sides to resolve their differences, just hours before the midnight deadline on the Crown corporation’s offers expired.

The strikes have created a huge backlog of undelivered mail, prompting some businesses to issue pleas for a resolution.

The Retail Council of Canada urged Ottawa to “bring an immediate end” to the rotating strikes through back-to-work legislation.

Canada Post says the suspension of strikes could allow it to begin reducing the massive backlog of mail and parcels now sitting in hundreds of trailers.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: Diabetes Canada donation bins becoming garbage dumps amid pandemic

Diabetes Canada has asked residents to stop overflowing bins with donations and garbage

Okanagan temperatures to be in the double digits all week

Kelowna’s forecast projects a high of 17 degrees on Thursday

COVID-19: Website created to let Revelstokians know what’s open and what isn’t

‘If people don’t know what’s open, it’s a barrier to help others’

COVID-19: More infected passengers on planes flying to and from Okanagan and Kamloops airports

The BC Centre of Disease Control has identified numerous flights with COVID-19 cases

Okanagan College grading system critical despite COVID-19 pandemic

On heels of petition penned by student, VP academic says grading system necessary for accurate assessments

Here’s how to talk to people who aren’t taking physical distancing seriously

Approach the conversation with empathy says conflict expert

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

Spike of visitors to Princeton-area stressing grocery supply chain and healthcare teams

‘We are really not set up to have this many people at this time of year.’ Area H Director Bob Coyne

Summerland to offer mental health webinar

Event will examine ways of coping during COVID-19 pandemic

Okanagan tourism continues to suffer following COVID-19 pandemic

The District of Lake Country voted to suspend tourism on March 31

Van crashes into Kamloops home

Police say the driver went into medical distress before the crash

Most Read