Rotating Postal Strike

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers hopes its rotating strikes will pressure Canada Post without greatly inconveniencing the public. But some believe it could actually damage the union.



Part One of The Current

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Rotating Postal Strike - CUPW

Yesterday Montreal was hit by the rotating postal strike. The Canadian Union of Postal Workers, or CUPW, is staging a rotating strike, targeting individual cities for work stoppages. The idea is that while it causes some inconvenience, it's not enough to turn the public against the union. Victoria and Moncton are the targets today.

So far, the strike has not resulted in an agreement. Canada Post turned down the union's latest contract proposal yesterday, saying it was too costly.

Denis Lemelin is the national president and chief negotiator for CUPW. He joined us from Ottawa.

Rotating Postal Strike - Panel

A rotating strike is a delicate balance -- cause inconvenience, but not outright anger. And while it keeps some wages coming in for workers, it must pressure an employer enough to make it worthwhile to bargain.

For some labour watchers, it's not clear if CUPW has mastered this balancing act.
Ann Frost is an Associate Professor of Business at the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario. She was in London. Stephanie Ross is an Assistant Professor and Co-Director of the Centre for Research on Work and Society at York University. She was in Hamilton.

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