Canada Post suspends community mailbox program
Hamiltonians who don’t yet have community mailboxes likely won’t see them until at least 2017.
Canada Post announced Monday it’s halting installations, including those planned for November and December and those announced for 2016.
This comes one week after the Trudeau Liberals – who pledged to nix the plan to end door-to-door delivery in favour of more review and public consultation on the options – were elected.
“It’s us delivering on a promise, which is that we would put a moratorium on this,” said new Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas MP Filomena Tassi. “It needs more study.”
Coun. Terry Whitehead, who has led the city’s charge against community mailboxes, said he’s happy the Crown corporation is temporarily suspending the program. But he said he’d also like to see community mailboxes installed in busy areas without sidewalks and adequate lighting removed immediately.
The city’s first phase of the community mailbox rollout is complete, he said, which includes most of his west Mountain ward. But other areas, including south of Stone Church Road in Ward 8, Dundas, Durand and Westdale have not had any mailboxes installed, he added.
Canada Post said in a media release that neighbourhoods where community mailboxes have been installed over the past 10 months won’t get door-to-door delivery back.
This past spring, the city went to court in a bid to regulate installation of community mailboxes on the Mountain, an unpopular first move in Canada Post’s plan to end door-to-door mail delivery across the country.
The city lost the jurisdictional court battle, but is pursuing an appeal at an estimated cost of $75,000.
Asked Monday if the city will still move ahead with the appeal, Whitehead said “I think that’s a discussion that we need to have with the legal department.
“I’m sure that we can stay any court dates until we get absolute clarity on whether or not the new Liberal government will look at that issue in respect to the paramountcy of the rights-of-way.”
Whitehead said he’d like to see council pass a resolution asking the Liberal government to look at who should have the final say in a dispute over the location of a community mailbox based on safety.
Ken Stone, a well-known activist who camped out to prevent Canada Post from installing a controversial community mailbox at East 34th Street and Brucedale Avenue, said halting the conversion is a “very good step” but doesn’t go far enough.
“We want our … door-to-door delivery resumed at once,” he said. (Source: Hamilton Spectator)