Canada Post workers occupy ministers’ offices to protest back-to-work legislation

Canada Post workers occupy ministers’ offices to protest back-to-work legislation

VANCOUVER—Striking Canada Post workers and their allies have staged sit-ins across the country at federal ministers’ offices, and said they won’t leave until back-to-work legislation, tabled Thursday, is rejected in Canada’s legislature.

Friday, local union organizers and supporters took it upon themselves to protest at ministers’ offices.

A Vancouver organizer said there are at least five occupations happening across the country, including at the offices of Fisheries and Oceans Minister Jonathan Wilkinson in North Vancouver, Finance Minister Bill Morneau in Toronto, Environment Minister Catherine McKenna in Ottawa, and Innovation Minister Navdeep Bains in Mississauga.

“It breaks my heart to see the amount of injuries among letter carriers,” said Marion Pollack, a retired worker who’s leading the protest at Wilkinson’s office. “We’re going to be there until the legislation is hopefully rejected.”

Federal Minister of Labour Patty Hadju tabled legislation Thursday which, if passed, would send striking Canada Post employees back to work while the Crown corporation and the employees’ union, Canadian Union of Postal Workers, negotiate a new collective agreement.

The union has been on a rotating strike schedule for a month. They’re seeking pay equity for rural and suburban letter carriers, more health and safety protections and job security. Canada Post offered the union some of the items they asked for in an effort to end the strike before the holiday shopping rush, but the union said the latest offer fell short.

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