Job no walk in the park

In reply to Paul Crossley’s letter printed on July 13 about postal workers benefits being out of line.

In reply to Paul Crossley’s letter printed on July 13 about postal workers benefits being out of line.

First of all, I would like to know what makes them out of line? Has he ever walked 10 miles with 35 pounds from one box to another? Sometimes there are 6-8 boxes until the route is done, strapped to his body, everyday, in all weather, all year round. While doing this for several years, dealing with dogs, insects, sometimes deer, bears and even cougars, faulty stairs, no sidewalks in some places, unshovelled snow covered paths, injuries occur. The job is physical, does not involve sitting in a chair at a computer day after day.

The requirements for a postal letter carrier job requires Grade 12, no criminal record and to be in good physical health. The CUPW union has fought for their workers long and hard over the years. Canada Post agreed to the benefit package through negotiations. The employee pays a portion for those benefits, financially as well as physically. Pounding the pavement takes a toll on one’s body after a while. As far as wages go, the worker makes far less than the CEO of Canada Post at $618,000 per year — that’s nearly $2,000 per day plus 33 per cent bonus and is getting a raise. Why does no one complain of their wages? People live in poverty while the one sitting in a chair in front of a computer makes more in a day than an average Canadian makes in a month. But no one complains about that.

Unions are why there is maternity leave, a two-day rest from all jobs, no child labour, better working conditions, health and safety policies, paid vacations, medical plans, harassment-free workplaces. And last but not least decent wages, minimum wages. So if unions were never formed, working would be like in the 1930s. The last time there was a postal dispute or disruption in mail delivery was back in 1997 and again it was to fight for what unions have accomplished for workers.

With a Conservative majority government and the passing of Bill C6, this country is in for a big surprise as it not only affects postal workers, it affects all Canadians.

I can’t help but wonder if Mr. Crossley tried to get a job at Canada Post and was refused due to the requirements for the job and now has a misdirected anger at CUPW instead of Canada Post.

I am a long-term employee of 30 years with Canada Post and the days of long-term employers are coming to an end, unfortunately. Unions would like to keep good wages for all workers, that is what we were fighting for: stopping two-tier wages, for future workers. I have children, do you? Their futures are at stake.

Susan Upton