Potential strike worries small business owner

Union in strike position at midnight on Thursday

News that a postal strike could happen as soon as midnight Thursday has local small business owners  concerned.

On Monday, the union representing Canada Post’s urban workers served the Crown corporation with a 72-hour notice that could see a strike begin this week if a deal is not reached between the two sides.

Royce Schmidt, owner of Glacier Wind Promotional Products in Montrose, said his business relies on Canada Post for marketing purposes. If the strike goes through, his Canada-wide business will be significantly affected.

“Without the mail it just crushes me because there’s no other way to reach your audience, a lot of people are offended by fax or e-mail so you’re really only left with mail.”

For Schmidt, the worst-case scenario is a drop in his sales.

“There are lots of us here who rely on the mail, some more than others. I depend on it for the marketing aspect; others use it for the shipping aspect.

“It’s detrimental ­­– if you’re mailing small packages to rural Canada, Canada Post can’t be beat price-wise. There are other options for getting the stuff there but you have to take a big hit financially.”

Schmidt said using couriers is out of the question unless he’s delivering products because the cost is too high.

FedEx also uses Canada Post as a sub-agent, which would eliminate their services as an option and for him there really is no other alternative to Canada Post.

“It’s tough when there are no alternatives. I mean, Canada Post has a monopoly and when other businesses go on strike sometimes it doesn’t have the impact Canada Post has … There’re lots of people who will be affected.”

According to Elections BC, the mail-in HST referendum ballots could be delayed by the strike. Larger companies like FortisBC have taken measures to ensure that clients have several options in place to keep their accounts up to date.

“We’re watching this just like everyone else,” said Neal Pobran, corporate communications manager for FortisBC.

“What we’re suggesting for our customers is e-billing and ‘Account Online’ (the gas equivalent) so then they can really get all the information they need online.”

FortisBC’s website lists options for payments should a strike take place, including direct debit, internet and phone banking and payments made at banking institutions.

According to John Caines, manager of national media relations for Canada Post, the branches in Trail, Rossland and Fruitvale employ 41 people collectively, 23 of those union members.

“We have an offer on the table that we think will ensure that the employees are better off than they are today and hopefully that will be the basis of a new agreement,” he said.

The union and Canada Post have been in talks for more than seven months but have been unable to reach an agreement.

Just Posted

Work has begun on the $10-million, 120-kilometre fibre-optic line from Playmor Junction to north of Nakusp. File photo
Work begins on Slocan Valley fibre-optic line

The $10-million, 120-kilometre fibre-optic line runs from Playmor Junction to north of Nakusp

Prince Charles Secondary School
School District 8 votes in favour of name change for Secondary School in Creston

In an act of reconciliation, a new name will be chosen for Prince Charles Secondary School

A B.C. police officer shows an approved roadside screening device. Photo: Saanich News file
Woman caught passed out behind the wheel in Trail

Police located the 38-year old in her parked but still running car, and had to rouse her awake.

Jade Osecki leading a Fridays for Future climate march in Nelson in 2020. Photo: Submitted
Nelson Grade 12 student Jade Osecki wins Suzy Hamilton Award

Carolyn Schramm was also honoured in this year’s environmental award for West Kootenay women

Photo courtesy of Mercer Celgar
Mercer Celgar to install new technology thanks to $4.5 million in federal funds

Project features process to improve fibre processing and address regional fibre availability issues

Maxwell Johnson is seen in Bella Bella, B.C., in an undated photo. The Indigenous man from British Columbia has filed complaints with the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal and the Canadian Human Rights Commission after he and his granddaughter were handcuffed when they tried to open a bank account. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Heiltsuk Nation, Damien Gillis, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
VIDEO: Chiefs join human rights case of Indigenous man handcuffed by police in B.C. bank

Maxwell Johnson said he wants change, not just words, from Vancouver police

Tk’emlups te Secwepemc Chief Rosanne Casimir stands outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School after speaking to reporters, in Kamloops, B.C., on Friday, June 4, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Kamloops chief says more unmarked graves will be found across Canada

Chief Rosanne Casimir told a virtual news conference the nation expects to release a report at the end of June

A woman wears a vaccinated sticker after receiving a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. ranks among highest in world in COVID-19 first-dose shots: health officials

More than 76% of eligible people have received their 1st shot

A screenshot of the First Peoples Cultural Councils First Peoples’ Map. (First Peoples Cultural Council)
Online resource blends B.C.-Alberta’s Indigenous languages, art and culture

Advisor says initiative supports the urgent need to preserve Indigenous languages

An artists conception of the new terminal building at the Pitt Meadows Regional Airport.
Air travel taking off in B.C., but lack of traffic controllers a sky-high concern

There will be demand for more air traffic controllers: Miller

Canadian Armed Forces experts are on their way to North Vancouver after a local homeowner expressed worry about a military artifact he recently purchased. (Twitter DNV Fire and Rescue)
Military called in to deal with antique ‘shell’ at North Vancouver home

‘The person somehow purchased a bombshell innocently believing it was an out-of-commission military artifact’

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz have set their wedding date for February, hoping that more COVID-19 restrictions will have lifted. (The Macleans)
B.C. couples ‘gambling’ on whether COVID rules will let them dance at their wedding

Amy Kobelt and Tony Cruz pushed back their wedding in hopes of being able to celebrate it without the constraints of COVID-19

A plane is silhouetted as it takes off from Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., May 13, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Report calls for airlines to refund passengers for flights halted due to COVID-19

Conclusion: federal help should be on the condition airlines immediately refund Canadian travellers

Green party Leader Annamie Paul speaks during a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, June 15, 2021. Paul has survived another day of party strife after a planned ouster shifted course, leaving her with a tenuous grip on power ahead of a likely federal election this year. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Green Leader Annamie Paul blasts ‘racist,’ ‘sexist’ party execs who sought ouster

Fallout has continued, with two of the federal council’s members resigning

Most Read