West Island seniors, merchants out of luck with Canada Post

Anthony Abbondanza
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Crown corporation’s decision to end door to door mail delivery has residents worried

West Islanders like Toni Cochand of Pointe Claire village’s Le Panier can expect to pay more to mail, yet receive less service as the price of a stamp is expected to increase to $1 in the coming months, and ultimately impact shipping costs.

At the age of 59, Doreen Edward hasn’t yet entered the golden years of her life.

By the time she becomes a senior, however, the Pointe Claire resident will have to walk a block just to retrieve her mail, courtesy of Canada Post’s decision last week to phase out and replace door to door mail delivery with community mail boxes (CMB) in urban areas in the next five years.

“This is going to have a huge impact on senior residents. A lot of people have already moved in areas because of certain levels of service, but with this gone, we’re losing one extremely important service,” said Edward, who’s also the founder of Venturing Out Beyond Cancer (VOBOC), an organization dedicated in alleviating the isolation felt by adolescents and young adults with cancer.

The decision, which could lead to a significant cut of 8,000 Canada Post employees, is expected to affect as much as five million households across the country. To date, nearly 10 million Canadian households use CMB’s.

According to Canada Post, the switch to CMB’s could save the crown corporation $400-$500 million per year. Included in the price is a one-time set-up fee of $200 per new address that requires a community mailbox.

And West Islanders can expect to pay more to mail, yet receive less service as the price of a stamp is expected to increase to $1 in the coming months, which could impact shipping costs.

Toni Cochand, owner of Le Panier in Pointe Claire, regularly pays bills with cheques and stamps, as well as mails 150,000 copies of the stores catalog every November to post offices across the province.

“If it costs a lot more for delivery (we ship across Canada) then unfortunately we will have to raise our prices a bit as we include the shipping costs,” said Cochand. 

According to Canada Post, price for its domestic parcel service will see an net average increase of 3.7 per cent, whereas the prices for USA/international parcel service will see an average net increase of 3.2 per cent –effective as of January 14, 2014.

Last Wednesday’s announcement came months after the Conference Board of Canada released its report, commissioned by Canada Post, which estimated the postal system’s total volume of mail was set to drop by more than 25 percent in the succeeding seven years, in conjunction with the growth of the e-commerce industry.

The April 2013 report also indicated that almost half of all Canadian households send no more than two pieces of mail each month.    

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Organizations: Canada Post, Conference Board of Canada

Geographic location: Pointe Claire, West Island, Canada USA

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Recent comments

  • Ed Jurick
    January 11, 2014 - 10:39

    Perhaps the 'topheads' at Canada Post should sit down together and ask themselves "why" are people using less and less mailings. How about shoddy service. We can go 3 to 4 days without mail then all of sudden "BANG" a bunch of letters and magazines wrapped with a blue elastic band that fills the whole mailbox, that's why.

  • John Q. Taxpayer
    January 03, 2014 - 06:47

    Government school of Economics.... Lesson 1: Business is down. Lesson 2: Raise prices Lesson 3: Cut services Lesson 4: File for bankruptcy... The End