EDITORIAL: Plan needed for mail delivery

We hope Canada Post will take some time to develop a plan serving the needs of all their customers.

This week, Canada Post announced they were suspending their program of converting areas still getting door-to-door delivery of mail to community mailboxes.

There are a number of reasons for Canada Post to abandon home delivery of mail, cost savings being the biggest. And for most people it’s not a major challenge to walk down to the mailbox at the end of the block each day. Or every few days, considering that less and less people and companies are making use of the postal system

But what about those people that do find it a challenge? The elderly and people with disabilities or other forms of restricted mobility?

For most people, walking 200 metres to pick up your mail might even seem like a nice bit of daily exercise. But for those not as agile as they once were, that quick jaunt turns into a journey of monumental proportions fraught with the danger of falling or other perils every step of the way and requiring a lot of energy

The number of people loss of home delivery will affect to that level is small, compared to the rest of the population, but that doesn’t mean they should be disregarded.

But the simple reality is that people are sending less mail. According to Canada Post, there were 1.4 billion fewer pieces of mail delivered in 2014 than 2006. And that means less income for the Crown corporation.

The days when mail delivered by post was the dominant form of communication are long gone, but that doesn’t mean there still is a considerable amount going through the system. Nor does it change Canada Post’s responsibility to ensure that mail is delivered.

While they are reevaluating the concept of community mailboxes, we hope Canada Post will take some time to develop a plan serving the needs of all their customers, and find a compromise that ensures those with mobility issues still have easy access to their mail.