Christmastime letters and parcels delivered to mailboxes and door steps from Rossland to Trail and the Beaver Valley certainly show that Canada Post is anything but passé on the local front.
In fact, it’s just the opposite.
“From November to early January, we estimate that most days we had at least triple the number of parcels, packets and letter mail than we normally process and deliver,” Luc Julien, Columbia River Local president, told the Trail Times.
“There were additional semi-trailers of mail from Vancouver and Kelowna brought to the night shift in Castlegar to process, which is typical during the Christmas period,” he explained.
“Inside workers worked overtime pre- and post-shift during their regular days off to sort and distribute incoming and outgoing mail. The line-ups at the retail counters were long and continuous, some customers had to stand outside the lobby doors waiting to send or pick up mail,” Julien said.
“On Sundays, in hopes to lower the overburdening, letter carriers delivered packets and parcels on overtime,” he added.
“The corporation has not released the official counts at this time, but our experience tells us this was a busier season.”
And it’s not just about stamps or seasonal cards and care packages at Christmas. From coast to coast the connectivity of the mail service is needed now more than ever, especially with the advent of 24/7 online shopping and its near unlimited choices right at the buyer’s fingertips.
Julien says this trend of Canada Post delivering all kinds of packages to the doors of online shoppers is experienced throughout the year, so it’s actually more of a mainstay service now.
“Last year Canada Post claimed a record number of parcels delivered, and this year was even busier,” he said.
So much so, that the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) is backing a campaign that focuses on the future of the postal service, using transportation links the corporation has long had in place to further their role in day-to-day needs, such as delivering food, and medicines.
Besides broadening the postal worker’s scope in the community, it’s a campaign that carries the message of a greener future with electric vehicle fleets, digital hubs, and other forward-thinking ideas.
“Here in the West Kootenay, we live in a pretty isolated area and far away from many big box stores so shopping online is a popular alternative, allowing customers to reliably receive goods at reasonable rates throughout the year,” Julien explained. “This said, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers has been promoting a campaign called Delivering Community Power. It offers a vision of a postal service and the post-carbon economy. “
A few other innovative solutions Julien mentioned that would provide beneficial services to Canadians and generate larger revenues for Canada Post, are ideas that involve face-to-face interactions as well as technological advances. These include having mail carriers check in on seniors at their doorsteps, postal banking, and installing charging station hubs at local post offices for all electric vehicles.
Canada can run entirely on renewable electricity by 2035 and transition to a 100 per cent clean economy by 2050, the campaign states.
“If that’s what we want, we have to start now. The postal system can drive this transition.”
To learn more, visit deliveringcommunitypower.ca.