Skip to main content

One less bill, one less flyer: A postal strike is hardly the crippling scenario it was 14 years ago, the last time Canada Post workers hit the picket lines.

Canadians can still e-mail, text, chat, and Skype at will, send Facebook invites and pay those bills online, and so many are thumbing their noses at the snail mail strike.

Winnipeg's postal workers were the first to walk the picket lines today in a series of rotating 24-hour strikes. The union wants wage hikes while the Crown corporation says it needs to slash labour costs because letter mail has fallen 17 per cent since 2006, this thanks to the popularity of our beloved digital communication.

The rotating strikes are bad news for plenty of Canadians, Canada Post insists, pointing to small businesses, the six million people living in rural Canada without broadband access, as well as the 4.5 million senior citizens who use snail mail regularly.

Those who rely on mail daily are scrambling to set up alternative arrangements.

The Canadian Bankers Association is urging people who haven't done so already to sign up for online banking.

In Toronto, welfare recipients will have to pick up their cheques or arrange direct deposit.

And small businesses will have to turn to costly private carriers for their shipments, although one company, "feminist sex store" Good For Her, has already sidestepped those costs with an offer to personally deliver erotic wares to Torontonians by bicycle.

"The weather is beautiful, and this way the staff here get to mix our love of bicycles and our desire to provide impeccable customer service," manager Alison Lee said in a release.

Mysterious packages and letters from grandma aside, how would a postal strike affect you?