December 11, 2007
(Letter sent to the editor of the Kamloops Daily News)
I would like to address some issues raised in the December 10 letter, "You deserve universal service from post office". Statements made by the local president of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) that Canada Post is closing offices and reducing services distort the truth.
Canada Post fully respects the moratorium on the closure of rural post offices. Since July 2005, more than 255 small offices in rural Canada have been staffed or are in the process of being staffed. There are, however, instances where the closure of a rural post office is unavoidable. For example, the death or retirement of the postmaster or a fire in the building in which the post office is housed could result in temporary closure. When these events occur, Canada Post consults with local officials to examine ways to provide continued service. In every instance, mail continues to be delivered in the community and the identity of that community is maintained. Where the consultation yields no viable options, and as a last resort, a consolidation of retail services with a nearby post office may occur.
To the specifics addressed in the letter, the Blind Bay post office is open and has never been closed. A new Postmaster has been hired in Heffley Creek and partial service has been available since December 3 with full services being restored effective January 2, 2008. In Anglemont, three attempts were made to staff the Postmaster position through internal and external advertising. Unfortunately no one stepped forward and the post office closed on December 3. Customers however continue to pick up their mail in Anglemont. The Walhachin Postmaster retired in October, 2004 and the 33 general delivery customers are accessing their mail through community mailboxes in their community. Retail services are available in Cache Creek or Savona where these customers do their shopping.
These post offices are managed by the Canadian Postmasters and Assistants Association which has been consulted to their satisfaction in each situation.
National Media Relations
Ottawa (613) 734-7675