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CUPW, Canada Post Dispute – Legislated Arbitration Begins Wednesday January 16

Fraser Valley/Ottawa – Back in November 2018, CUPW The Canadian Union of Postal Workers issued a request for the federal government to appoint a mediator in its contract talks with Canada Post.

Canada Post had issued time sensitive proposals aimed at reaching agreements with its approximately 42,000 urban employees and 8,000 rural and suburban carriers.

CUPW’s key demands for postal workers are job security, an end to forced overtime and overburdening, better health and safety measures, service expansion and equality for RSMC’s (Rural and Suburban Mail Carrier) . The concern there is they are not paid the same as regular full time employees.

Now On Tuesday, CUPW issued a notice to their union members stating :

The arbitration process, imposed on us in the back to work legislation, officially begins on Wednesday, January 16, 2019. Your negotiating committee and our legal counsel, along with Canada Post representatives, will meet with Arbitrator Elizabeth MacPherson to discuss the issues in dispute and the arbitration process.

The first date of arbitration will be used to determine which issues are still in dispute and must be resolved by the arbitrator. The legislation passed by the Government stated that the Minister of Labour would determine the issues in dispute. The Minister chose not to do this and has given the arbitrator the authority to make this determination.

The next step in the proceeding is to determine the arbitration process. The legislation provides two types of arbitration processes, a conventional interest arbitration and a Final Offer Selection. The Union wants to ensure that we protect our right to present our issues in dispute as we see necessary.

The Union will participate in the arbitration on a “without prejudice” basis subject to any challenges or court rulings on the back to work legislation. This legislation took away our Constitutional right to strike and right to fair collective bargaining. We will continue to fight to protect our rights.

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