The District of Port Edward said it is ready to fight to keep the community’s post office operating.
Councillor Christine McKenzie brought forward a letter from the Canadian Union of Postal Workers stating Canada Post “wants to dramatically cut service to improve its financial situation”, and said Port Edward needs to add their voice to other communities fighting reduced service.
“I got a little concerned with what Canada Post is thinking of doing, and one of those things is to get rid of rural post offices … they’re talking about not even having the boxes, so we would have to go to town to get the mail,” she said, a statement that found support among those in council chambers.
“Port Edward built that post office to make sure we had postal service … what gets me is we’re growing and they want to start getting rid of things,” said Mayor Dave MacDonald.
One thing the union said it would like to see happen is for the upcoming review of the Canadian Postal Service Charter be open to the public, and the district will be writing Lisa Raitt, the federal minister responsible for Canada Post, to voice their support for the idea.
“I think that is the important thing, that we have the right to express our opinion during this review,” said Mayor MacDonald.
Canada Post spokesperson Anick Losier said there are no definitive plans for changing service, but discussions about the future of Canada Post are ongoing.
“At the moment we know the current business model is broken, it doesn’t meet the needs of current Canadians, so we are having the discussion about how to meet the needs of Canadians now and into the future,” she said, noting the company is “very much concerned” about its long-term viability.
“We do have a special relationship with rural communities because a lot of the time we are the only ones who will deliver there … we will continue to be the lifeline to rural Canada, but what that will look like is still being discussed.”