Sellers shipping to Canada should be aware that Canada Post workers are currently on 24-hour rotating strikes that started yesterday in Victoria, Edmonton, Windsor and Halifax and moved to the Greater Toronto region today.
While this is not a nationwide total stoppage, it may still impact some shipments within Canada and going to and from Canada.
The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) has been negotiating with Canada Post for nearly a year to resolve labor issues and while the union decided last month not to call for a nationwide strike, the union says not enough progress was made to continue with the status quo.
Therefore, starting this week the union will hold 24-hour strikes in different locations trying to force Canada Post to address some of its concerns.
“For us to reach any agreements, Canada Post has to talk about the changing nature of postal work and the issues that stem from the growth of parcels. We need to address health and safety concerns and precarious work as well as gender equality. We will stay at the bargaining table and on the picket line for as long as it takes to get a fair deal for our members.”
Mike Palecek, CUPW national president in a statement
The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) calls for a quick resolution to the strike to avoid significant disruptions to small business heading into the holiday season.
“While a rotating strike may be less harmful than a general strike, it creates additional uncertainty for businesses at a critical time for many small firms. The bad news for Canada Post workers is that every time they even threaten a strike, more small business customers move to use alternatives, many never returning to Canada Post.”
Dan Kelly, CFIB president
Marketplace Sellers Protected From Impact by Strikes
Both eBay and Etsy issues statements to sellers indicating they will protect sellers from late shipments caused by the strike as long as they follow other standard shipping guidelines in their terms of service.
However, sellers should contact Canadian customers to notify them of the potential delivery delays due to the strikes and may wish to offer alternative shipping methods to guarantee delivery.
Other online retailers should stay in contact with Canadian customers and may want to consider adding a general note to shipping notifications about the possibility of delays of shipments going to Canada.
Canada Post maintains an update page with the current situation regarding the strikes and negotiations that sellers should check every morning.
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