Coming Back to Work Safely in St. John’s

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Monday March 30 2020
2019-2023/107

All the while that we have been responding to the COVID-19 crisis, we were preparing for the possibility of postal workers being infected. Indeed, last week in St. John’s, NL, we had confirmed cases of COVID-19.

While the local and regional representatives were responding, the national office kept close watch on Canada Post Corporation management to ensure that our members were properly protected.


The Cases

The first positive test was confirmed on Monday, March 23. The same day, facilities in St. John’s were shut down and area delivery suspended while postal workers were tested, exposure risks were investigated, and facilities were cleaned and disinfected.

Monday morning March 30, the workers of the St. John’s depot and plant return to work, while some remain in quarantine.


How Was it Handled?

When the Public Health Authority notified postal officials of the first case of COVID-19 in the St. John’s post office, all of the necessary measures to protect workers were implemented immediately:

  • Workers were notified while on route, instructed to return to the depot, and sent home along with all plant workers.
  • Health Canada investigated the contact points of the workers involved and notified those who required full quarantine.
  • The facility was shut down for a week. The building and some vehicles were sanitized; remaining vehicles are being sanitized before going back into service.
  • After consulting with the Public Health Agency of Canada, Canada Post has determined it safe to resume operations.
  • Canada Post contacted those workers who are able to return to work and advised them that processing will resume Monday, March 30.

Only workers who have no symptoms, who are not quarantined or self-isolating; and who have no known contact with the COVID positive members will return to work.


We Stand Together

Together CUPW members across the country welcome the members of the St. John’s local back to work. We wish continued well-being for you and your families.

Our thoughts and solidarity are with the St. John’s members who are ill. We wish them a quick and complete recovery.

For workers on the front lines, your national, regional and local union representatives know that the work you do is important to all Canadians. If you are a medical dispatcher, a cleaner, a same-day courier or a postal worker, you bring so many of the necessities of life to the doorsteps of all Canadians. We hear your concerns, we thank you for your support and we remind you that we are in this struggle together.


Stay Informed, Stay Safe!

For all the updates, please go to www.cupw.ca and sign up for E- Digest. On our COVID-19  landing page https://www.cupw.ca/en/coronavirus-covid-19-1, you’ll find the latest updates and info on how to join a webinar in French or English on March 30 or 31, with Sister Jan Simpson, National President, and Brother Carl Girouard, National Grievance Officer.  We are preparing a second webinar for our francophone members. We will update our web site once we have a date and time.

You can also email your concerns about COVID‑19 and your working conditions to our response group at covid-19@cupw-sttp.org and someone will respond within 24 hours to your concerns.

 

In solidarity,

Jan Simpson
National President