Other organizations: Standing Committee on Government Operations and Estimates—June 16, 2020
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Canada Post Corporation: Response to COVID-19
- Canada Post is closely monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic, and taking steps to help keep its employees and the communities it serves safe, while following the guidance of the Public Health Agency of Canada
- Public Services and Procurement Canada is working closely with Canada Post, and Canada Post is working closely with its unions, in order to ensure employees and the public are protected
- As the situation with the coronavirus evolves, the health and safety of employees and the Canadians they serve takes the highest priority while Canada Post takes steps to continue delivering the service Canadians rely on
If pressed on health and safety:
- Canada Post is taking action to protect employees and customers, including:
- enhanced cleaning in all of its facilities and extra personal protective equipment for employees
- reduced hours of service to clean, restock and provide some relief to employees
- priority service to those at a higher risk, such as seniors, during the first hour of each day
- installing signage and floor decals to encourage social distancing, limiting the number of customers in smaller offices, and installing clear barriers at the counter to increase safety
- suspending its normal 15-day hold period and asking that customers who are ill or self-isolating delay their visit and pick up their parcel only when it’s safe to do so
Amazon, Purolator and Canada Post
- We have entered into an agreement with Amazon, providing us with an access to its technology interface where supplies will be catalogued to allow provincial and territorial health authorities to order personal protection equipment (PPE) purchased by the federal government
- Canada Post and Purolator are delivering the personal protective equipment and supplies ordered
- This agreement enhances the logistics and distribution capabilities of the federal government to help ensure that supplies make it into the hands of healthcare workers across the country as quickly as possible
Health and safety
- Our government believes that every Canadian has the right to a safe and healthy workplace. We fully expect Amazon to follow the guidelines put forward by Canada’s public health organizations and protect their workers during this crisis
- Canada Post is also following federal-provincial and municipal public health recommendations. For example, employees across the country who are over 70 are being asked to stay home and facilities are undergoing rigorous cleaning processes
Pandemic’s impact on Canada Post business
- The pandemic is causing unprecedented impacts on Canada Post’s business
- With many Canadians isolating at home and shopping more online, Canada Post is now processing and delivering parcels at levels only experienced during the busiest weeks of the Christmas season
- Heavy parcel volumes, combined with important safety measures (physical distancing) implemented in processing facilities have led to some delays, but Canada Post continues to operate across the country while delivering in record numbers
- To date, the financial uplift from the growth in parcels has not made up for the reduction in the direct marketing and letter mail lines of business which have declined significantly
- Canada Post and the government is continuing to monitor this closely
Canada Post 2019 annual report
On May 20, 2020, Canada Post Corporation released its 2019 financial results and recorded a loss before tax of $153 million.
- Canada Post has a long-standing mandate to serve all Canadians while remaining financially self-sufficient
- Fulfilling this dual mandate is a challenge that the company is addressing, as it invests and evolves to meet the changing needs and expectations of Canadians
If pressed on the $153 million recorded loss before taxes:
- Canada Post’s parcels business continued to grow but at a slower pace than 2018, as competition in e-commerce delivery intensified
- the shift from mail to parcels is having a significant impact on Canada Post’s operating model, processing and delivering parcels is significantly more expensive than letters
- transaction mail and direct marketing continued to decline as Canadians communicate, transact and advertise more by digital means
- costs increased as the number of addresses continued to rise, in 2019, Canada Post served 168,000 more addresses, now totaling close to 16,5 million addresses
Canada Post arbitrator decision
On June 11, 2020, an arbitration ruling was issued for 2 disputes involving Canada Post Corporation and the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW). This ruling will serve as the basis for new collective agreements between the 2 parties.
- Canada Post has informed personnel that the arbitrator decision includes wage increases for employees represented by both bargaining units of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers
- The 2 new collective agreements are now 4 years in length, meaning they are in effect until December 31, 2021 and January 31, 2022
- This closes this round of collective bargaining for rural and suburban mail carriers as well as urban operations employees. We hope the new agreements provide the basis for the development of a collaborative working relationship between the parties as they move forward
If pressed on wage increases:
- both bargaining units of CUPW will see wage increases. Wages will increase by:
- 2.0% effective February 1, 2018
- 2.0% effective February 1, 2019
- 2.5% effective February 1, 2020
- 2.9% effective February 1, 2021
National Capital Commission: Response to COVID-19
Since the onset of COVID-19, the National Capital Commission (NCC) has worked to provide public access to its assets while respecting public health directives. To date, this has meant enjoying the outdoors while ensuring safe physical distancing.
As the governments of Ontario and Quebec have recently outlined plans to gradually reopen, the NCC has also developed a Framework for Public Use of Assets to ease toward greater public access.
In doing so, the NCC will stay responsive to public health directives and measures by provincial authorities, as they happen, and will continue consultations with local municipalities.
We are currently in Phase 2 of the NCC’s Framework for Public Use of Its Assets.
The NCC has developed the following planning framework to guide its actions moving forward. It provides clear guidance about how the NCC will align increased access to its assets with the broader provincial re-openings, as they occur.
The NCC will remain responsive to external factors such as public health directives and measures by provincial authorities, and will continue consultations with local municipalities.
Overview of the 3-phase approach:
- Phase 1: local use only with the introduction of partial closure to motor vehicles on NCC parkways to facilitate greater physical distancing
- Phase 2: broader public access to assets for both local and other users
- Phase 3: regular use of assets
In all cases, physical distancing will need to be practised by all users. On-site signage will continue to remind the public of this directive.
Dogs are permitted on most NCC trails and in most NCC parks, but they must be kept on leash at all times. They are permitted off leash in designated areas and parks.
- As part of Phase 2 of the NCC’s Framework for Public Use of Its Assets, Gatineau Park will be accessible for broader public use, and most parking lots are open
- Recreational amenities, such as day shelters, beaches and picnic areas remain closed. Mountain biking is permitted
- The opening of Gatineau Park campgrounds is postponed. Reservations can be made for the period from June 12 to October 11, 2020. In order to comply with potential upcoming public health directives with respect to camping, and to facilitate physical distancing, some sites are not available, notably during peak periods. These sites could be made available at a later date
- Fires are not permitted anywhere in Gatineau Park
- Access to the Greenbelt is fully permitted, for recreational activities, parking lots are open
- Recreational amenities, such as outhouses, benches and picnic areas, remain closed
- Bruce Pit off-leash dog park is open
National Capital Commission urban parks and lands
- Access to all NCC parks and lands is fully permitted for recreational activities
- Recreational amenities, such as outhouses, benches, picnic areas and play structures, remain closed, parking lots are open, with a few exceptions
- During Phase 1 and 2 of the NCC’s Framework for Public Use of Its Assets, sections of the parkways are closed to motor vehicle traffic, and open for pedestrians and cyclists, as part of pilot projects
- These combined closures amount to over 50 percent of all NCC parkways whose use is being modified to provide more and safer outdoor access
Challenges enforcing new rules
The NCC is working closely with local authorities to enforce closures and ensure social distancing rules are respected.
Festivals and events
The Jazz festival and the festival Franco-Ontarien have been cancelled. The Ottawa Race Weekend has also been cancelled. The NCC continues to monitor the situation.
Harrington Lake renovations
- The NCC is an independent Crown Corporation and is responsible for year-round maintenance and operations for the 6 official residences in Canada’s Capital Region
- The NCC recognizes the significance of these official residences and are committed to working with their partners to ensure that issues related to security, heritage preservation, sustainability, and accessibility are addressed
- The NCC’s work at Harrington Lake is part of a broader program to preserve, maintain and restore all official residences under NCC management
- PSPC will continue to support the NCC in their important work
Canada Lands Company: Response to COVID-19
- CN Tower, Toronto, Ontario
- Montreal Science Centre
- Old Port of Montreal programming
- Downsview Park programming, Toronto, Ontario
Canada Lands Company (CLC) is offering rent relief to most of its commercial and all of its residential tenants. The relief is retroactive to March 1, 2020 and is provided to the earlier of government declarations that businesses may resume or June 30, 2020. The CLC continues to monitor the situation and will consider extending its rent relief on a case-by-case basis beyond June 30, 2020 if appropriate.
Protecting the health of workers
Buildings normally open to the public and administrative offices are closed. Only operations deemed essential are carried out on site by skeleton crews who are afforded special considerations to protect their health and safety. Certain retail operations in Quebec at the Old Port of Montreal have resumed based on provincial guidelines. All CLC employees will continue to be paid until September 2020, at which time a review of business operations and needs will be conducted. Most employees are working from home and some, while on full pay, are “relieved of duties” at this time.
The CLC amended a number of its human resources policies in response to COVID-19, removing the waiting period before employees can access paid sick leave and removing the doctor’s note requirement. Leave for family obligations that would normally not have been paid is now considered paid leave. Planned vacation can be cancelled and carry over maximums have been established.
Once provincial governments and health authorities provide their support and reopening guidelines, operations will only resume once CLC feels it has appropriate measures and procedures in place to ensure the health and well-being of staff and guests.
The CLC has been, and will continue to be significantly financially impacted by the closures of its attractions sites, cost of rent relief provided to tenants, cost of carrying full payroll obligations with significantly reduced revenues, the cooling of the real estate markets across the country, and additional, incremental health and safety measures incurred in responding to COVID-19. CLC assesses significant cost implications to restart the businesses at the Old Port of Montreal and CN Tower that will most likely extend into the 2021 to 2022 fiscal year.
Facts and figures about Canada Lands Company
- 943 employees across its real estate, attractions and corporate divisions
- Operates regional and head offices in 7 cities across the country
- Owns approximately 1,300 acres of real estate
- Has 5 active real estate projects in 5 provinces
- Almost 4 million visitors visited Canada Lands’ attractions in Toronto and Montreal in 2019 to 2020
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