This blog is about MQ, Java, C, and other programming things but I need to complain/vent/bitch about vengeful, petty, Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s).
When Capitalware moved to London, Ontario, Canada 3 years ago, I thought it was a good idea to get a mailbox for mail delivery, since Capitalware might move again (to a different location within London) and getting customers to update their systems takes a lot of chasing of the customers. Hence, using a mailbox and doing it once, seemed the logical choice. So, 3 years ago, I called many different mailbox providers and decided to go with UPS Store (# 24) based on price and proximity to where I would be in London. That particular UPS Store had been in business for many, many years (early 90’s, I believe) before Capitalware ever moved to London.
So, 3 years ago, Capitalware’s new address became:
1673 Richmond Street, Suite 524
London, Ontario N6G2N3
For 3 years, Capitalware has received its mail without issue except for one occurrence 8 months ago when a check was returned to a reseller. The UPS Store franchisee told me that regular letter carrier was on holidays and the replacement letter carrier returned mail for many of the UPS Store customers (no clear reason was given for the mail being returned). Everything went back to normal when regular letter carrier returned from his/her holidays.
On Wednesday afternoon (September 10th), a US customer emailed (and called) me asking if Capitalware’s address had changed because a check was returned to them. They had the last part of the mailing address as “London, ON – Ontario, CA”. I originally thought the issue was that the check went to “Ontario, California” (that city actually exists).
On Thursday (September 11th), I went to the UPS Store and discovered (1) that I had no mail and (2) the UPS franchisee had put a letter in each mailbox saying that Canada Post would no longer deliver mail to the UPS Store unless it include the “Unit 11″ and “PMB###” (rather than Suite ###). I only go to the UPS Store once (sometimes twice) a week because I really don’t receive that much mail on a weekly basis.
Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s) claim, the following is the correct format and the only acceptable format (even though the UPS Store has been in business for many years using the old format):
Unit 11, 1673 Richmond Street, PMB524
London, Ontario N6G2N3
Freaking out, I started reviewing what I “should” have received at the beginning of the month. Besides the unknown number of checks from customers, I was missing 2 bank statements (CDN & USA), 2 MasterCard statements (CDN & USA) and Revenue Canada monthly payroll form. Revenue Canada is like the US’s IRS, they don’t care if “your dog ate your homework”, you must make your payments on time or else be fined. In Canada, a company’s payroll taxes MUST be paid by the 15th of every month or you will receive a fine, maybe a penalty and interest charges.
I immediately called the bank about the address and found out that yes both statements were already mailed at the beginning of the month. I asked about another copy and they said there would be a cost but I could switch to electronic statements and print them out (free of charge). I said perfect and no more mail issues.
I immediately called MasterCard and asked about my missing statements and if I could get electronic statements and they said yes. I said perfect and no more mail issues.
I immediately called Revenue Canada about the address and found out that not only did they send me the payroll form at the beginning of the month, they had also sent the quarterly HST form (HST is similar to VAT in Europe). Revenue Canada person (who was helpful) said they would resend both forms to the new address but I still needed to pay the payroll taxes by the 15th. There is zero chance that I will receive the payroll form by the 15th, so basically, I’m screwed. So thank you, you bunch of vengeful, petty, Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s).
And to put a cherry on top of my problems, early this week, I placed a huge order with VistaPrint for supplies (i.e. banners, signs, materials, etc..) for the upcoming conference. I used the original address because at the time, I did not know that the Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s) were screwing me. Of course, VistaPrint uses Canada Post to deliver the supplies. I called VistaPrint about the address but the order had shipped. I called Canada Post, gave them the tracking number, explained the situation and asked if the “Unit 11″ could be added to the shipping address. The woman said no. I asked if a note could be added to the file with the “Unit 11″ and she said no. She said if the address is wrong that it would be returned to the sender and there was nothing that could be done. She said to call back on Monday (delivery day) and “if” the packages were held at the sorting station then they “might” be able to help otherwise, the packages would be returned to the sender. So, basically, I’m screwed!!
I’m not the only small business affected at the UPS Store as there are well over a hundred mailboxes, hence, a lot of small business are affected by these vengeful, petty, Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s).
Of course, you are asking why am I blaming Canada Post’s unionized letter carrier(s), well, they are on a “work to rule” campaign because Canada Post wants to layoff letter carriers to cut costs as Canada Post is losing billions of dollars every year. So, the unionized letter carriers are rejecting any and all mail that does not perfectly follow the mailing address rules. So, they punishing the customers!! Instead of making sure that their customers want to use the postal system more (meaning more revenue), nope, they are doing everything they can to piss-off their customers and drive away business. Talk about “Cutting off the nose to spite the face” or “biting the hand that feeds you”, not very bright.
– Did the Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s) send me postal mail saying that they were going to return all of my incoming mail because of an addressing issue? No.
– Did the Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s) call me or send me an email (both are available via Google) that they were going to return all of my incoming mail because of an addressing issue? No.
– Did the Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s) make ANY attempt to contact me? No.
When I was really young (a long, long time ago), I lived in a really, REALLY small town in Quebec. We used to have garbage pickup twice a week by a guy in a pickup truck (I’m not kidding). At some point, the town decided that they needed to save money and do garbage pickup (by a guy in a pickup) once a week. Things change and people get used to it.
For 15-20 years, everyone has been saying that Canada Post (actually all postal systems) are in the same boat as horse-drawn carriages and buggy whips were in 100+ years ago. It is a business with a very dismal future and if you work in this industry, it doesn’t take a genius to know that at some point most postal workers are going to be laid off. Pissing off your customers, trying to do financial harm and hardship to your customers is the stupidest thing you could do and only shows how vengeful, petty, Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s) are.
Given this behavior of these vengeful, petty people, I say, lets accelerate the future and bring this problem to a boiling point faster.
– I have already switched my business bank and MasterCard statements to electronic statements, so that is 4 less pieces of mail to be delivered.
– I’m going to try and get as many customers as possible to pay by wire transfer rather than send checks.
– Next, in my personal life, this weekend I am switching my gas and hydro statements to electronic statements. I’ll get my bank (personal accounts) and 4 credit cards switched to electronic statements plus I have a bunch of other financial stuff (i.e trading accounts), I’ll need to figure out if I can switch them. Finally, I’ll need to find out if my insurance companies (I have 3) will allow me to switch to electronic statements.
When it is all said and done, I should just about eliminated all postal mail (except for the stupid junk mail, which goes straight into the recycle bin anyway).
Will Canada join me in getting rid of postal mail? If you need a reason other than getting rid of vengeful, petty, Canada Post unionized letter carrier(s) then think about how much better for the environment it will be if we stopped cutting down trees for paper when you can get everything electronically.
Come Canada, do it for the environment. If people accelerated the switch to electronic statements NOW, then in no time, there will be no need for daily mail delivery and it too can become a weekly event just like garbage collection. Hence, Canada Post could get rid of most of the letter carriers and hopefully stop losing billions and billions of dollars every year which is covered by our taxes! I want my tax dollars to go to something important like health care and not daily mail delivery.
Actually, here’s a wild idea, if we have weekly garbage collection and weekly mail delivery, why not combine them? The garbage man/woman has to come to your home to pickup your garbage, so they could drop off your mail at the same time (we wouldn’t even need those super mailboxes). Kill 2 birds with a single stone and everybody will get home mail deliver (and think of the cost savings!). Food for thought.
So, join me today Canada, switch your postal mail to electronic format today!