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Available Expert - Canada Post, CUPW reach tentative agreement

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Queen's University labour historian Christo Aivalis is available to comment on the tentative agreement announced late last night between Canada Post and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW). The two-year agreement dealt with key sticking points such as a universal pension model that included new hires, and a defined process to address the pay equity issues between urban and rural members. The agreement, which still needs to be ratified, has& averts a possible mail disruption that had loomed for months.

"As suspected, both sides deeply wanted to avoid job action, given how each time they came close to a strike or lockout position, they pulled back to the negotiating table," says Dr. Aivalis. "The union did negotiatiate a pretty good deal, all things considered. One thing is clear, however - the two year time frame for this tentative agreement is fairly short. This might mean that this agreement was, in part, a deferral of the major issues by both sides. Management might feel that they will have another opportunity to push through pension changes, which CUPW might be hoping for new leadership at the top of Canada Post more amenable to their concerns and vision for the crown corporation."

Dr. Aivalis is an adjunct professor of Canadian political and labour history at Queen's University. He has been following the negotations closely and has been cited in the media - on this and other topics - a number of times.

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