Deepak Chopra resigns

RE: Canada Post CEO Deepak Chopra announces he will resign in March 2018

The UPCE National Executive learned of Mr. Chopra’s decision to resign (stated as in March of 2018), on August 14, 2017. Mr. Chopra’s decision seemed to have been communicated to the media first, before being shared with employees and colleagues. Unfortunately, this is nothing new for Canada Post, and yet another example of a company that apparently prides itself in its “leadership behaviours.”

The UPCE National Executive has been openly vocal about linked concerns pertaining to Canada Post’s ongoing transparency, pretend consultations, and overall direction of the business. Our position during the Canada Post Review Process was clear: We believe that Canada Post’s social and public policy objectives should define the financial framework in which it needs to operate. Essentially, we strongly believe that people and services should have precedence over profit, dividends, and large executive bonuses.

When the newly elected Liberal Government asked Deepak Chopra, Canada Post CEO, to resign in 2015, Siân Matthews, chair of the Canada Post board of directors, stated that “Responsible leaders, like Mr. Chopra, who commit to public service in this great country, should be celebrated, and not shamed.”

We have nothing against a commitment to public service, in fact, we both welcome and embrace it. We have never opposed the transformation from a transactional mail centric business to a parcel centric business. But we continue to vehemently oppose job cuts, lower benefits, and shrinking wages. We do stand behind the important services that we, as employees, provide to internal and external clients. More specifically, we believe in improved services to our Indigenous communities, restoring the Food Mail Program, restoring door-to-door delivery, and we concurrently maintain the providing of services that in turn result in the providing of good paying Canadian jobs, that in turn support the Canadian economy.

From a commercial standpoint, we believe that other lines of business should continue to be explored. And yes, that includes postal banking. There must be a better utilization of our infrastructure to provide other services to the community, especially in rural areas.

Mr. Chopra is certainly committed, but not to public service. He has shown to be committed to profit and neoliberal (or for-profit private sector) ideology. Services and workplace conditions erode when profit becomes the ultimate goal. The Canada Post mandate is to be self-sufficient, which is vastly different from that of making profit at the expense of its employees.

Our current CEO is finally leaving, but he only represents one position within a governance structure that needs immediate and complete revision. If changing culture at Canada Post is an actual goal, then the governance structure needs to be revised (including the board of directors), and the Executives need to stop hiring mirror images of themselves into senior roles.

We wish Mr. Chopra the best in all of his future endeavors beyond Canada Post, and hope that the new Canada Post CEO will bring to the company a refreshing commitment to public service and policy objectives, that favour the people, as opposed to favouring private enterprise.

Always in solidarity,

 

 

UPCE National executives

Letter from UPCE National Executives

 

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