GTA residents finally getting mail: what took so long?

& Kylie Conner

Long-awaited mail is finally being delivered to people  in the GTA as the extreme weather subsides. But many people are wondering if it really was the weather or staff shortages at Canada Post that caused the lack of mail in December.

“The staffing need was not met,” said Learie Charles, Grievance Officer for the Scarborough Local of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW).

Usually about 150 relief workers would help complete routes of full time workers during this high volume time, but this year there were only 87.

Mail couriers would have submitted their leave time requests about 9 months in advance, giving Canada Post enough time to hire the needed relief staff for that time period.

Charles said many full-time workers for Canada Post not only put in their eight full hours of work, but also worked up to 12 hours in order to complete their mail routes.

However, Eugene Kanapik, a spokesperson for Canada Post, said that the delayed mail delivery people in the GTA  experienced was largely affected by the severe – and unusual – weather in late December.

Despite one of the  biggest ice storms hitting the GTA, Kanapik confirms the majority of people did receive their mail. Canada post employees also experienced difficulty getting to work during the storm, along with a shortage of relief workers, according to Kanapik.

“In a way, it was the perfect storm for us,” Kanapik said. Though there was large success with the delivery of signature mail and parcels, letter mail experienced more delays.

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