MP Bob Zimmer supports upcoming Canada Post changes

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Erica Fisher

Erica is a reporter for Moose FM and in Fort St. John, B.C. She grew up in Victoria, B.C. and received her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec.

Below is an op-ed on the matter by our Member of Parliament: 

I understand the concern of many people across the region about Canada Post and their decision to phase out door-to-door mail service. It is a service that Canadians in many cities have enjoyed and are accustomed to receiving. But in the world of instant and electronic communication, there is simply not enough postage being paid to sustain the current model.

Business needs to adapt in order to stay competitive when technology changes the landscape. The carriage building industry needed to adapt when horses were replaced by the internal combustion engine. Live theatre had to adapt when movies came onto the scene. The newspaper industry is learning to adapt to online competition, and Canada Post is doing the same.

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Canada Post had a $130 million loss in the latest quarter, and projects an operating loss of $1 billion by 2020 if nothing changes. That is an extra billion dollars of your tax dollars which will be spent to make up that shortfall, even though most Canadians do not have their mail delivered right to their doorstep.

I remember going down to the Post Office in Dawson Creek as a child with my grandfather to pick up the mail. That mail tradition still continues in many small communities across Canada, like Pouce Coupe. Two-thirds of urban and suburban households across Canada already pick up their mail from community mailboxes. Updating the way mail is delivered to that remaining one-third is expected to save Canada Post upwards of $500 million over the next five years. Rural residents who have their mail box at the entrance to their property will not be affected by this change.

Simply put, the current mail delivery structure cannot support itself. There has been a 25% drop in mail volume since 2008, and Canada Post is losing hundreds of millions of dollars every year. Canada Post is a Crown Corporation and operates as an arms-length agency from Government, but they understand something needs to be done to adapt to a changing environment. Our Conservative Government is encouraged to see Canada Post shares our vision for more streamlined public sector services. They are taking an important first step to ensure that reliable postal service remains available and affordable.

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