Companies & Industries

Canada Post will still deliver these things during a strike or lockout

Canada Post could halt services starting on Monday. Here's what will and will not be delivered

Row of Canada Post mailboxes

(Lars Hagberg/CP)

As Canada Post workers brace to be locked out on Monday, Canadians are being hit with the sudden realization that we do still rely on snail mail for some things. While it’s possible that a postal delivery disruption may go unnoticed by some, if you’re waiting for a piece of furniture or a paycheque, a lockout could be inconvenient, even highly stressful. Even if union workers are unable to come to an agreement with the Canada Post, the crown corporation has said it will continue shipping certain items. Here’s what they’ve deemed important enough to keep delivering, and what you’ll just have to wait for:

What will be delivered during a Canada Post strike or lockout

Any pensions and benefits the Government of Canada considers essential will be pushed through in the event of a lockout. “Canadians who rely on these payments will continue to have access to the money they need,” the federal government says.

Such payments include: Canada Pension Plan and Old Age Security cheques; benefits for veterans; disability benefits; student loan payments; the Canada Child Benefit; and the Working Income Tax Benefit. If you’re in Saskatchewan, child support and victim assistance payments will still be delivered. In Alberta, you can expect child and spousal support payments, as well as benefits to vulnerable persons.

Don’t expect cheques to arrive on their regular schedule, however. Canada Post plans to take just one day each month to deliver this special type of mail.

Finally, if you happen to be waiting on a live animal to arrive by mail, the corporation says they will be delivered safely, and not held up in a warehouse with the rest of your packages.

What will not be delivered during a Canada Post strike or lockout

Not all important government documents will be delivered. Documents sent to and from Canada Revenue Agency, like tax payments and returns, and benefits (other than the “essential” ones listed above) will not be mailed out. You are still expected to pay bills and taxes on time, however, and the CRA recommends using their online services during the work stoppage.

Likewise, hydro, cable, Internet, and phone providers, are urging customers to register for electronic payments if they haven’t already, in order to pay their bills online. And the Government of Canada is encouraging businesses to set up direct deposits to receive and make electronic payments on time.

Any other mail that’s sent out during the lockout will sit in distribution centres and warehouses until Canada Post goes back to work. Many e-retailers are switching their delivery services to a different courier for the time being. However, shipment fees may be higher and delivery times longer, and rural communities may still not be able to receive shipments—since UPS and FedEx don’t generally serve low-density areas.