VANCOUVER– Last night, CUPW national president Denis Lemelin presented the Canadian Union of Postal Workers’ vision of the post office and the impact of deregulation on communities at a meeting at the Vancouver Public Library. He spoke about the importance of a public post office and the value of the social, cultural and economic role it plays for the good of all society. Like other public services, postal services are threatened by privatization and deregulation.
Lemelin talked about what happened in Sweden with deregulation. Deregulation meant loss of jobs. Big corporations get better service at cheaper prices, but the general population pays more for stamps, while wages and benefits for workers go down.
Lemelin presented the 14 point vision for a Canadian postal system that includes:
- it remains public;
- provides door-to-door service in urban areas;
- provides rural delivery;
- provides employees with safe, unionized, decently-compensated jobs and good working conditions;
- invests profits and dividend payments in services, infrastructure, health and safety measures, and its employees.
Jim Sinclair, BC Federation of Labour president, also spoke at the meeting. He said, “Our challenge is to elect people and build a vision for Canada that stands for the public good. We need to be strategic, so that voters have workers and public services in mind when they cast their ballot.”
The struggle for public services is a big fight and all workers have to defend good jobs and benefits. More on CUPE BC’s anti-privatization campaign.