A group of community activists say legislating Canada Post employees back to work sets a “dangerous precedent” and vocalized that concern outside the corporation’s distribution centre in east London on Monday morning.
“Workers have been denied the right to negotiate a contract, a fair contract, through the collective bargaining process with their employer,” said Wendy Goldsmith with Londoners for Door to Door.
“We’re upset that the Liberal government has legislated workers back to work without a contract, and we’re standing up for workers everywhere.”
The small demonstration drew a dozen people to the Canada Post processing facility on Highbury Avenue just south of Oxford Street and disrupted the flow of work.
“A lot of trucks were turned away, delayed,” said Goldsmith.
“We had a lot of honks, waves and gratitude from workers, and even though it was really cold out there, the mood on the line was really high and we know that we’re part of a bigger movement.”
Goldsmith hopes the protest sends a clear message to the Liberal government that community members are upset about back-to-work legislation. She also hopes the members of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers across Canada get a fair deal that addresses the sticking points of the five-week job action.
Similar demonstrations have been taking place across the country ever since the Liberal government implemented back-to-work legislation last week. Such protests led to six arrests at a facility in Halifax, where police laid charges of mischief and obstructing police officers.
Goldsmith says police were present at the rally in London and told demonstrators they were within their right to protest.
“They were just concerned for our safety in terms of traffic and then they moved along,” said Goldsmith.