July 9, 2015 2:38 pm
Updated: July 9, 2015 8:44 pm

Calgary residents claim community mailbox left open for hours

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WATCH: Mail for a number of West Dover residents was left out in the open after an oversight by a postal worker. As Jill Croteau reports, one committed neighbor helped protect their privacy.

CALGARY – Several residents from a southeast Calgary neighbourhood reported a Canada Post community mailbox was left open for hours, with their mail in full view, on Wednesday afternoon.

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Brenda Miller said the mailbox had been open since around 1 p.m. She said after a call to the post office through a number listed on the box, as well as a call to police, a postal worker came and gathered the mail around 5 p.m.

“My neighbour sat out there and just guarded it…in 30 degree heat,” Miller told Global News. “We got the runaround several times. One of the fellas…on the phone said, ‘Oh just walk away and leave it.’

“You could see people’s cheques! In good conscience, none of us wanted to do that.”

READ MORE: Canada Post reveals next Calgary addresses to lose home delivery

That neighbour was Gord Stuart, who said he found the box wide open when he drove up to collect his mail.

“They (Canada post) said they’d have someone here ASAP, I told them I’d wait until someone arrived,” he said. “If it was my mail, my cheques… I would hope someone would do that for me.”

Stuart’s wife, Myrna, said she was disgusted with Canada Post’s response, claiming after the fourth call she was told they had no record of the incident.

“People make mistakes—the postman did. But not to act about it? That’s unforgivable,” she said.

Gord Stuart said this was the first time his neighbourhood had any problems with the box.

“I’ve heard other people have had troubles with community mailbox, but we haven’t had any problems here. If this trend continues and Canada Post doesn’t care, maybe we should go back to door-to-door mail.”

Residents said the mailbox was on 30 Avenue S.E. between 26 Street and 29 Street S.E.

“I called the non-emergency police number, and they did get a number for me and whatnot, but she went ahead and called it herself,” said Miller. “She said it would be a four-hour window before someone could come.”

READ MORE: Canada Post changes 700 super mailbox locations after outrage

A Canada Post spokesperson said Wednesday there’s an automatic process in which contractors are dispatched to secure mail if a customer calls in such a complaint. Canada Post documents all calls, but couldn’t immediately provide information on the reports in Miller’s neighbourhood.

The spokesperson said the incident was under investigation, and “whenever there’s a delay, there’s usually a good reason for it.”

“Unfortunately, there was a breakdown in communicating the issue properly, which contributed to the delay,” said spokesperson Anick Losier in a Thursday email. “We have reviewed our processes and taken steps to rectify any future mishap. We thank the customer who diligently alerted us to the issue and apologize for this unacceptable situation.”

READ MORE: Court rules in favour of Canada Post in legal dispute over community mailboxes

With files from Jill Croteau

© 2015 Shaw Media

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