I continue to be disappointed that something for which our Eagle Ridge neighbourhood fought with so much vigour three decades ago--door-to-door mail delivery--is being abandoned without any apparent effort to find a middle-ground solution, such as limiting door-to-door delivery to Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays only (and Tuesdays and Thursdays the following week).
Municipalities throughout Canada also continue to be upset, and have used the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to bring their concerns to Canada Post President and CEO Deepak Chopra. Mr. Chopra has now sent a letter to the FCM explaining Canada Post’s five-year phasing out of home delivery, starting in late 2014. Here is the text of that letter:
January 29, 2014
Dear Municipal Leader
Last month we announced a five-point plan to protect the postal service in a world in which digital communication is rapidly replacing traditional mail. In a key initiative, Canada Post will convert the remaining five million addresses that have door-to-door delivery to community mailbox delivery. This will occur over the next five years. I would like to assure you that the transition of delivery service in your community will be handled responsibly and with respect.
While the majority of Canadians will not see any change to how their mail is delivered, a fair number will be impacted. As we carefully plan our next steps, I would like to share with you the guiding principles that will govern our approach in the communities that are affected:
• We recognize that dense urban cores in our larger cities, with their older neighbourhoods and smaller lots, present different challenges for locating community mailboxes than suburban areas. With this in mind, we will leave the majority of these areas until the final stage of this multi-year project. We will take the necessary time to understand their unique needs and find solutions that work for these neighbourhoods.
• We will be sensitive to the needs of seniors and of disabled Canadians. We are developing alternative approaches for people with significant mobility challenges, who lack viable alternatives and upon whom delivery to a community mailbox would impose an unacceptable hardship.
• There will be no change in delivery to people living in apartment buildings, seniors’ buildings and condominiums who already have mail delivered in the building lobby. In addition, customers who have mail delivered to a rural mailbox (a customer-owned mailbox at the end of a driveway) will not be affected by this change.
• We will work with community leaders and municipal planning officials to choose safe and appropriate sites.
• We will seek the views of affected citizens directly, through multiple channels including surveys and online feedback tools.
• We will be as innovative and flexible as possible, while being responsible towards our goal to protect the financial sustainability of postal service for all Canadians. We will look at various solutions and different equipment, taking the necessary time to address any significant challenges in a given community.
• We will respect the needs of businesses to have mail delivered to their door. The vast majority of business addresses will continue to have mail and parcels delivered to their door and will experience no change.
The businesses that will continue to have delivery to the door are located in well-established business areas, such as main streets or “business corridors”; or receive a relatively large volume of mail or parcels.
This initiative is a crucial aspect of our plan to protect and sustain postal service for Canadians, both today and for tomorrow. As we execute it, I intend to see that we live up to our special responsibility to serve every Canadian and every community. We are committed to doing this in a thoughtful way, and to keeping you informed as this initiative unfolds.
President and CEO
Canada Post Corporation