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Postal union to stick with court challenge

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MONTREAL—The Canadian Union of Postal Workers says it will continue with its Federal Court challenge of Canada Post’s decision to end home mail delivery—even with a new federal government in power.

A union spokesman in Quebec said yesterday that while Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged to maintain home delivery across the country, it was said as a campaign promise.

Sylvain Lapointe, a national director of the union for the Montreal area, said the Liberals have never discussed what would happen to sites where community mailboxes recently have been erected to replace home mail delivery.

Lapointe said that given the uncertainty, the union will maintain the legal challenge, which includes several groups, including the disabled and retirees who want home delivery maintained.

The mayors of several municipalities also have tried to join in as interveners in the case.

Late last month, Canada Post announced a temporary suspension of its plan to end home mail delivery—but only for the rest of this year.

The country’s national mail carrier stopped installing the new community boxes a week after the Liberals came to power, meaning about half-a-million households slated to be converted before the end of 2015 maintained their home delivery service.

During 2014, Canada Post converted 100,000 addresses that had door-to-door delivery to community mailboxes.

In 2015, it planned to convert about 900,000 more.

“Our motion also covers areas that have lost home delivery,” Lapointe noted.

“Now there is a moratorium that is in place, but what we don’t know is if there will be restoration of home delivery in areas that lost it following the announcement in December, 2013,” he said.

Canada Post had announced a plan to move to community mailboxes nearly two years ago, citing a decline in home mail delivery revenues.

The case is before the Federal Court in Toronto, but isn’t expected to be argued on its merits until sometime next year.

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