Canada Post must deal with 'injury crisis' to end walkouts, says union

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"Should the Canada Post service disruptions continue through this key retail moment, these (smaller businesses) will be seriously disadvantaged in competing for USA demand".

Palecek won't say whether tentative deals can be reached before Saturday's deadline imposed by Canada Post. The offer comes after E-Bay intervened saying there is warning of huge losses on Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.

The Canadian Press reported the Crown corporation's four-year offer includes an annual two per cent wage hike, plus a signing bonus of up to $1,000 per employee.

"Should the Canada Post service disruptions continue through this key retail moment, these (smaller businesses) will be seriously disadvantaged in competing for US demand".

Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which are annual shopping days known for their deep discounts, fall this year on November 23 and 26.

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers said there are positives in the latest contract offer from the Crown corporation.

Canada Post is hoping its offer to 50,000 postal workers will be enough to end more than three weeks of disruptive rotating strikes.

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) said there is some movement but major issues remain up in the air.

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Canada Post said Wednesday it was facing an unprecedented backlog of shipments and warned the situation could escalate quickly.

Canada Post said recent major shutdowns of parcel processing in Toronto and Vancouver have created a backlog of almost 500 tractor-trailer loads of parcels and packages that need to be sorted - 375 trailers in Toronto and 120 in Vancouver as of Thursday morning.

"At Gateway parcel processing plant in Toronto, we have now surpassed 260 trailers of parcels and packets waiting to be unloaded", Hamilton said in an email.

"The union just took down their pickets but we are backed up beyond anything we've ever seen in our history".

Picket lines were up in Kamloops for two days last week.

CUPW Prairie Region education and organization officer Todd Jarema said that while he hasn't had time to look at the offer in great detail, at first glance it seemed a lot of the main issues brought forward by the union had not been addressed, including the "plethora" of parcels, multiple-bundle delivery, and access to equal pay and benefits for rural units. "We already have joint health and safety committees and management hasn't addressed these issues there, so why would this be any different?" said Palecek.

Canada Post and CUPW have been negotiating for almost a year, most recently with the help of a federally appointed mediator, whose mandate expired this week.

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