Updated on June 25, 2020 at 17pm EST

Preventative Measures

Travel – personal and for business

Group meetings and training

Facility Maintenance, Contractors and Visitors

Mail Processing / Collection & Delivery

Retail / New processes

Protective barriers

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Preventative Measures

What can I do to protect myself?

To help protect yourself, follow these recommended general hygiene measures:

  • Wash hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth with gloved or unwashed hands.
  • Avoid contact with people showing symptoms of respiratory illnesses.
  • Avoid shaking hands and practice physical distancing:

Keep 2 metres (twice an arm’s length) between yourself and others – when arriving at and leaving work, at breaks, and as much as you reasonably can while working in a facility or dealing with the public.

Employees should continue to use nitrile gloves that are provided to help keep their hands clean. Refer to this job aid for removing disposable gloves.

Employees who are wearing a mask or face cover should refer to the job aids on how to properly put on and remove a single-use mask or reusable/washable face cover.

How do I care for my reusable gloves?

Regular washing of reusable gloves is imperative if they are to remain hygienic and do the job they were meant to do. Refer to this link for washing tips. Keeping your gloves clean will also help them to last longer.

Avoid touching your face with your hands – whether you are wearing gloves or not. This will help to limit the introduction of contaminants around your mouth and nose, reducing the chance of contracting a respiratory virus, or to your eyes, which can become infected.

When should I call Public Health?

Public Health refers to a provincial public health authority that you can contact to discuss your symptoms/situation and to determine if self-quarantine and/or further testing for COVID-19 is required. You can find the contact information for your provincial public health authority here.

What is “physical distancing” and how will it affect my work?

Physical distancing is when we deliberately avoid large crowds, limit the number we come into close contact with, and increase the physical space between people to avoid spreading a disease within the community.

This safe practice is one of the most important things we can do to protect ourselves and each other from COVID-19.

The general rule of thumb is to stay at least two metres (six feet) away from other people to lessen your chances of catching COVID-19.

In our plants and depots, where distancing is harder to achieve due to space constraints and tasks requiring two people, we are trying to minimize how often employees are in close proximity.

We have urged team leaders in Operations to stagger start times when possible to allow employees taking public transit to avoid rush-hour commutes. We’ve also encouraged them to stagger breaks and lunch periods to avoid large crowding in break rooms.

In addition to regular hand-washing, all employees are being urged to avoid direct physical contact, such as handshaking or hugging. We recommend you keep twice an arm’s length between yourself and others when arriving and leaving work, walking hallways or at breaks.

Other valuable tips on physical distancing can be found in documents prepared for different groups in our plants and depots:

Do the limits on social gatherings apply to workplaces?

As we’ve seen, public health officials strongly advise against social gatherings to minimize the risk of the virus spreading. To help reduce the potential for social gatherings, we’ve seen limitation or closures of bars, restaurants and other public social places across the country.

Along with many other government organizations, we provide a critical service to Canadians, especially during this difficult time. We are all following the recommendations of the Public Health Agency of Canada to keep people safe as we continue to operate.

Most important, we have issued physical distancing instructions for all plants, depots and post offices (See links in physical distancing, above) to minimize the need for employees to be in close proximity in the workplace. If you have questions, please talk to your team leader.

In addition we’re also asking employees to:

  • Wash hands regularly.
  • Avoid direct physical contact, such as handshaking.
  • Keep twice an arm’s length distance between themselves and others when arriving and leaving work or walking the hallways.

We encourage all employees to apply the recommendations from public health officials when outside the workplace, for your safety and that of your friends and families, just as we apply their recommendations for the workplace.

What is our new process for delivering Personal Contact Items (PCIs)?

To eliminate the need for signatures at the door, we have implemented a Knock, Drop and Go approach to delivery.

This policy strengthens our efforts around physical distancing, including reducing traffic in our post offices.

After scanning the item, delivery agents will:

  • Knock or ring at the address to alert the customer.
  • Drop the item in the safest available location.
  • Go to the next address on your route.

Items that require Proof of Age, ID or Customs payments will be sent directly from our depots to a retail post office for pick-up, with no restrictions on when customers can pick up the item.

  • “Do Not Safe Drop” items will be left at the delivery address.
  • Registered Mail and Xpresspost Certified packets will be left at the delivery address.
  • For Proof of Age, Proof of Identity and Customs-Owing items: these will be carded for pickup in the depot, and transferred to retail.
  • The Government of Canada has stopped sending passports to Canadians’ homes for the time being, so we will no longer be delivering them. Urgent or sensitive documents will be sent via Xpresspost Certified, which can be left at the delivery address.
  • If you have questions, ask your team leader, or contact your regional specialist:

    • Pascal Brikh (East): 435-885-9656
    • Jeff Rudling (Central): 416-407-7969
    • Bradley Wallis (West): 403-827-8011
    • Andrew Fisher (National) 613-734-3000 ext. 5-5884

    If someone wears a mask while working, should they and people around them still practise physical distancing?

    Yes, as much as possible. Dr. Theresa Tam, Chief Public Health Officer of Canada, has advised that where physical distancing is difficult, wearing a face covering is an additional measure that can be taken to protect others nearby. She maintains physical distancing is the primary and preferred method of protecting against the virus.

    Can I wear a face covering (non-medical mask) at work?

    Yes. We are taking the following approach based on the recommendations from public health.

    Face coverings (non-medical masks) are typically loose-fitting masks that cover the nose and mouth, and have ear loops, ties or bands. They can be any type of face covering including scarves and bandanas. Physical distancing remains the recommended primary approach and we continue to provide gloves and sanitizer.

    Company-provided face coverings: In specific work locations where consistent physical distancing is not possible or sustained two-person work is the norm, we have provided job aids to help conduct this work safely. We are working to quickly source and distribute face coverings for additional protection and will maintain supplies for priority work areas or processes. These include International Exchange offices at the Pacific Processing Centre and Vista for handling loose loads of bulk mail, sustained lifting of large items or loading/unloading air cans and those RSMCs who use Ergo helpers. Any team leaders with employees in these situations should consult their Health and Safety team for guidance.

    Personally-supplied face coverings: If employees wish to also wear a personally supplied face covering where they feel physical distancing is not possible, they are free to do so. If a face covering is worn in a mechanized area, they should be properly secured. We have also installed plastic shields in post offices to provide ongoing protection without the need for masks or face coverings.

    I have breathing difficulties and will not be able to wear a washable face covering or mask yet would like to be protected. Are there other options?

    • Some people cannot wear face coverings because of breathing challenges, discomfort or inability to remove the mask without assistance.
    • For these people, clear plastic face shields, although not as effective, may be an alternative.
    • Research on the effectiveness of shields as protection from infectious airborne particles in non-medical settings is limited. Click here to see what Health Canada says about non-medical masks and face coverings.
    • We are working on a job aid for putting on and removing or caring for a reusable / washable face shield and will post here when available.

    Is Canada Post going to supply N95 Respirators?

    These are intended specifically for health-care workers who come into close contact with COVID-19 patients, and are therefore critically important to the medical field. Within our operations, N95 Respirators will continue to be provided for the specific tasks and processes that require them. That includes close-contact maintenance procedures in plants where there is an exposure risk to chemicals, responding to unknown powder or substance incidents in our facilities and cleaners working with cleaning supplies that require a mask. Understanding the importance of N95 Respirators to the health care system, we are securing these items as available only where they are required in our operations.

    Even when wearing a mask or face cover, it’s important to continue to practice physical distancing and frequent handwashing.

    Would scanning people to take their temperature before they enter a facility keep employees safer?

    We continue to take our guidance on all matters related to COVID-19 from the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC). At this time, the PHAC does not support the use of temperature scanners in federal workplaces.

    Unfortunately, with these scanners, false readings are common, especially in a non-controlled environment like the front entrance of a workplace. Something as simple as coming in from outside where it is colder or warmer can cause a variance in temperature reading.

    A false high-temperature reading could cause a great deal of unnecessary concern for that employee. Yet a low-temperature reading does not prove someone is free of the virus, and the individual can still be contagious even if they do not show symptoms.

    This could provide a false sense of security and undermine our physical distancing and proper hand hygiene efforts, which are the measures most strongly recommended by all health officials.

    What tips and resources will help employees work remotely with good ergonomics and overall wellness?

    This guidance and these resources will help you stay healthy while working on your laptop at home:

    • Work at a desk or a table to maintain proper posture and comfort and complete a self-assessment using this checklist.
    • Choose a chair that allows you to:
      • Sit with your back properly supported. Use a supportive cushion or rolled up towel/blanket if you need more support.
      • Keep your shoulders relaxed and your elbows at 90-120 degrees and your hips at 90 degrees while seated.
      • If the seat pan is too long and touches you behind your knees, place a pillow behind your back to bring you forward on the seat. If you need to be seated higher and the seat is not adjustable, try sitting on a pillow.
      • Touch the floor with your feet flat. If your seat is too high, use a foot rest or place books or a box under your feet to sit comfortably.
    • Use an external mouse, keyboard and monitor if possible. Having them at the right height and distance is preferable for your wrists and overall posture compared to using the laptop’s keyboard and screen.
      • Raise the top of your screen to eye level with the use of a monitor stand, books or a box. To confirm the correct screen distance, extend your arm out in front of you. Your fingertips should touch the screen.
      • If you do not have an external keyboard and mouse to use, place the laptop on your work surface and tilt the screen backwards to minimize neck bending.
    • Establish a routine of regular work hours with periodic breaks, as you would take in the office. Take 1-2 min. stretch break for every 60 min. of computer work or just get up for some water to move and give your eyes a break. You could try the Web Browser version of this online stretch clock, which will remind you to take short stretch breaks.
    • Ensure the plugs, cords and cables for your electronic devices are in good condition and placed where you won’t trip over them.
    • Be kind to yourself and Keep Wellness in Mind. Homewood Health created these resources specifically for the COVID-19 situation.

    Who is getting face coverings?

    Canada Post will be making reusable face coverings available to all of our people. Due to the high demand for these items, we will receive them in batches. To ensure we get the face coverings to employees as quickly as we receive them, we are prioritizing how we distribute them.

    The first batch of face coverings is being distributed the week of May 11 to all employees who:

    • Work in our 21 processing plants;
    • Work in prioritized work centres where sustained physical distancing isn’t possible; or
    • Are designated and certified first-aid providers.

    Why are these employees getting priority?

    Physical-distancing measures are in place in our plants as they are across our network, but it can be more challenging to maintain two metres of separation in plants, especially when carrying bulk or heavy items. This is also true of the work centres we have given priority to.

    First aiders need to wear face coverings because they come into close contact with the people they are helping.

    How do I put on, remove and wash a face covering?

    This job aid describes how to put on, remove and wash face covering in the proper sequence to minimize potential exposure to contaminants.

    Is wearing a face covering mandatory?

    No. It is not mandatory to wear a face covering. Employees who want them will receive up to two reusable face-coverings, which will last for a month. It is our intention to provide employees with new face coverings each month while necessary. Employees will be responsible for washing the face coverings as they do with their uniforms. Employees can also wear their own face coverings, if they prefer.

    If we all wear a face covering where I work, do we still have to practice physical distancing?

    Wearing a face covering is not a replacement for physical distancing and frequent handwashing, which remain the recommended primary approach.

    How can I work safely if I am in a vehicle with another employee?

    When physical distancing is not possible for employees who work in close proximity within a vehicle, wear a face covering combined with a face shield. Even with this protective equipment, employees should follow recommended hygiene measures. Please clean frequently touched vehicle interior surfaces daily.

    If you want a face covering or face shield, ask your team leader.

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    Travel – personal and for business

    What do I do if I am returning from international travel?

    As of March 14, 2020, the Public Health Agency of Canada advises travellers upon their return to Canada as follows:

    • Self-isolate for 14 days after your return from travel outside of Canada.
    • Monitor your health for fever, cough or difficulty breathing.
    • Wash your hands often for 20 seconds and cover your mouth and nose with your arm when coughing or sneezing.

    If you develop a fever, cough or difficulty breathing within 14 days:

    • Continue to isolate yourself from others
    • Immediately call a health care professional or public health authority and describe your symptoms and travel history. Follow their instructions carefully.

    Since March 5, 2020, travellers entering Canada by land, rail and ferry have been subject to the same screenings as international air travellers. Travellers will be transferred to PHAC if deemed at risk.

    If you are an employee returning from international travel, or live with someone who returned from international travel and have concerns, please call your team leader before coming to work.

    If I am returning from an international trip, do I have to contact Public Health or a physician?

    If you have returned since the Public Health Agency of Canada recommended a 14-day self-isolation for all returning travelers, you only need to contact public health or a physician if you have symptoms of COVID-19. They are fever, cough and difficulty breathing. This also applies to if you have travelled to the U.S.

    Can I go on international travel for business or personal reasons?

    Business Travel – We ask that you cancel all international business travel. The coronavirus situation is unpredictable and changing very fast. We don’t want our employees to become stuck in another country while travelling for work.

    Personal Travel – The Government of Canada has advised Canadians to cancel or postpone all non-essential travel outside Canada. We encourage employees to follow this advice and think carefully about any non-essential travel outside the country.

    Canada Post is following the guidance of the Public Health Agency of Canada. For the most up-to-date travel notifications and advisories, please visit the Government of Canada’s Travel Health Notices.

    Do I need to cancel business trips or events I was planning to attend in Canada?

    At this time, please defer all but essential air or rail travel within Canada. If travel within Canada is necessary, talk to your team leader and follow the pre-approval process. We continue to encourage those who travel by vehicle for business to do so.

    I live in one province and work in another. Do I need special permission or ID to be able to travel freely to work and to prevent delays at the border?

    Canada Post performs an essential service as identified by Public Safety Canada. To do our job, our employees must be free to move within and across cities, provinces and territories.

    Restrictions on travel within and between provinces may result in employees being asked to provide proof of their need to travel. Employees who are travelling within or between provinces should always carry their Canada Post access and identification cards to show if stopped by authorities. If this documentation is insufficient in your area, a letter identifying your need for travel can be obtained from your GM.

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    Group meetings and training

    Is anything changing about group meetings, including those for training?

    Please look for reasonable ways to minimize the size of your meetings or utilize other options such as video-conferencing or conference calls.

    Please talk to your team leader and postpone all non-mandatory training. Online training can continue, but sessions involving travel or groups can certainly occur at a later date.

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    Facility Maintenance, Contractors and Visitors

    Can we continue to ask JLL to fix issues and remove hazards in our buildings at this time?

    We are working closely with JLL, our facility management service provider, to manage requests for repairs.

    With physical distancing being practised in our buildings, JLL will only complete work orders that are considered an emergency. JLL has mobile technicians and teams to serve locations that it does not normally staff.   

    Non-emergency work orders will continue to be completed based on the resource availability and priority.

    Can contracted work resume if precautions are in place?

    Contracted work is restarting in many provinces. When planning the resumption of work, it is critical to ensure that physical distancing guidelines continue to be followed and recommended hygiene measures like regular hand washing be maintained. Additional precautions may apply, depending on the type of work, such as maximum number of construction workers allowed on a site at once and the use of face covers during activities requiring close proximity over a sustained period of time. It is the responsibility of the project leads to be aware of the requirements for restrictions applicable in the province(s) where the work will take place, and to ensure that contractors are compliant.

    Are there any new requirements for visitors or contractors as a result of COVID-19?

    Visitors and contractors are still required to register through the local registration process (facilities) or with a local Canada Post representative in Operations via logbook.

    Additionally, to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our community and to reduce the risk of exposure for our employees and visitors, we are conducting a simple screening questionnaire.

    Contractors with employees working at Canada Post facilities who have been off and in self-isolation or quarantine are required to complete and retain this Questionnaire for Return to Work prior to approving an employee’s return to work in a Canada Post facility.

    Contractors must confirm that their employee has been cleared for return to work with their Canada Post contract manager, as specified within the Questionnaire for Return to Work.

    How is Canada Post protecting employee safety if transportation contractors are accessing our facilities?

    Contractors are vital to our supply chain, performing critical work for Canada Post. Everyone, including contractors, must follow our dock safety processes at all times, as well as recommendations from the Public Health Agency of Canada.

    • Continue to follow our standard dock and yard process. If there is a change to our process, we will advise team leaders and employees of this through national communications channels.
    • Keep twice an arm’s length (two metres or six feet) between you and others on our docks or in our facilities.
    • Wash your hands regularly and frequently with soap for at least 20 seconds.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed or gloved hands.
    • Do your best to sit away from others in lunchrooms and break rooms.
    • Hand off paperwork without coming into contact with others. For example, placing paperwork in a basket, or on a clipboard, desk, or another location that allows the driver to collect it without it being passed by the employee.

    Importantly, our contractors are required to disclose whether they have travelled internationally, exhibit symptoms or any other risk factors associated with COVID-19. If they are deemed to be a risk, they are not permitted on our property. So, there is no good reason to stand in the way of contractors doing their jobs:

    • Do not prevent contractors from entering our facilities.
    • Do not prevent contractors from using our washrooms.
    • Do not ask drivers to drop their trailers in the yard.
    • Do not decline to accept or exchange paperwork (see above).
    • Do not change our standard dock and yard process.

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    Mail Processing / Collection & Delivery

    What is Canada Post telling Canadians about our parcel delays?

    We are telling Canadians that they should anticipate parcel delays for the foreseeable future, even as we deliver at record levels. As Canadians continue to ramp up and diversify their online shopping, Canada Post is responding to unprecedented parcel volumes while maintaining important physical distancing measures in all our facilities. Processing record parcel volumes in plants that were never designed to keep people 2 metres apart takes more time.

    Our employees see it, but we’re also telling Canadians that it’s not just the volumes that are causing challenges. The number of larger household items, like mini-fridges, patio furniture and barbecues coming through our network, have also increased. These bulky items often require a two-person lift, which creates additional safety challenges and delays.

    We are processing and delivering on weekends and have additional support from trained temporary employees. As well, some parcels may be transferred to other Canada Post locations for processing based on capacity. While this reduces delays, customers tracking their items may notice their parcel is taking a different route than normal.

    Is it safe to handle mail and parcels?

    The following is from World Health Organization:

    Is it safe to receive a package from any area where COVID-19 has been reported?

    Yes. The likelihood of an infected person contaminating commercial goods is low and the risk of catching the virus that causes COVID-19 from a package that has been moved, travelled and exposed to different conditions and temperature is also low.

    Is it safe to handle mail and parcels from China and other regions?

    Yes. The World Health Organization and PHAC maintain it is safe to handle international mail, including mail from China.

    China Post has been disinfecting its mail since January 27th with a bleach-like compound that is safe and commonly found in household products. To avoid minor skin irritation, nitrile gloves are recommended as a precaution. Masks are not required, but employees with a higher sensitivity to smell may wish to use one.

    Our current N95 masks are suited for this purpose though may not be readily available due to an international shortage of supplies.

    Our International Relations teams continue to be in contact with other Postal Operations and no safety risks have been identified.

    Is it safe for maintenance technicians to share Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

    • Use of shared harnesses and dielectric gloves:
      Teams are provided access to cleaning wipes to clean Personal Protective Equipment before and after use to maintain proper hygiene. This type of equipment is not used by all Maintenance team members, and only infrequently by those who do. A sufficient pool of equipment should be available to allow us to clean, dry and replace returned or damaged equipment without running out of usable stock.
    • Shared jackets, rain capes and other articles (as referred to under CPC / CUPW Collective Agreement, Article 34).
      A sufficient pool of these articles must be properly maintained and a schedule followed for regular dry-cleaning. With proper routines and cleaning schedules in place and followed, Personal Protective Equipment can be shared safely.

    If you deliver to a site known to be under quarantine, should you disinfect your vehicle?

    Based on current information provided by PHAC, coronaviruses have poor survivability on surfaces, and are generally thought to be spread by respiratory droplets from coughs or sneezes.

    The best way to prevent respiratory and other illnesses is to:

    • avoid touching the eyes, nose and mouth;
    • consistently use good hand hygiene measures, which include frequent handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.

    Cleaning wipes are available if you want them in your workspace.

    If you have a COVID-related workplace concern, consult your team leader.

    If you deliver to a site in quarantine (before it was shut down) what are you supposed to do?

    PHAC recommends that, if you are concerned about exposure, to monitor yourself for fever, cough and difficulty breathing. Consult your health care provider or contact your provincial public health authority as soon as possible, if concerned about symptoms. If you have a related workplace concern, connect with your team leader.

    You are scheduled to deliver to an address known to be under quarantine. What’s the process?

    Do not deliver to the address in question.

    Notify your supervisor of the situation at that point of call (i.e. place under quarantine).

    If you are delivering to an individual customer’s home and learn that they are under quarantine or have COVID-19, what process should I follow?

    Leave a Delivery Notice Card (DNC) and ask the customer to have someone who is not under quarantine pick up their item(s) on their behalf. If you have any concerns for your safety, do not deliver to the address in question, and notify your supervisor of the situation at the address.

    Should you report points of call that can’t be delivered to due to a quarantine?

    Yes. Please report any such point of call. It must be added to the OPS system (detail and rural post office), as per normal process.

    In the event your post office closes for any reason, who do you report to and how are customers advised?

    Notify your team leader, who will contact the appropriate Area Performance Centre (APC).

    Will scheduled volume counts continue unchanged?

    No.

    Volume counts require a lot of attention from Managers, Superintendents and Supervisors, all of whom are focused on supporting their teams during this difficult time. As a result, scheduled volume counts will be cancelled in the following depots until further notice:

    May

    • CALGARY LCD 1
    • CALGARY LCD 8
    • CALGARY LCD 9
    • CALGARY LCD 12
    • CALGARY LCD 17
    • CALGARY LCD 31
    • COQUITLAM LCD PORT MOODY
    • GANDER LCD MAIN
    • GRAND FALLS-WINDSOR LCD MAIN
    • KITCHENER LCD 3
    • KITIMAT LCD MAIN
    • MONTRÉAL PDF CHAMPLAIN 1
    • MONTRÉAL LCD CHAMPLAIN 2
    • MONTRÉAL LCD N.D.-D-GRACE
    • PICKERING LCD MAIN
    • ST STEPHEN LCD MAIN
    • TORONTO STN H
    • TORONTO STN L
    • TORONTO STN R
    • WINDSOR LCD 1

    June

    • BATHURST LCD MAIN
    • CALGARY LCD 18
    • CALGARY LCD 19
    • CAMPBELLTON LCD MAIN
    • DELTA LCD 1
    • FARNHAM PDF BUREAU-CHEF
    • HAWKESBURY LCD MAIN
    • MONTRÉAL LCD AHUNTSIC
    • OWEN SOUND LCD MAIN
    • RENFREW LCD MAIN
    • SMITHS FALLS LCD MAIN

    This will relieve pressure on team leaders – allowing them to communicate with employees and focus on ensuring their safety.

    Restructure schedules will be adjusted accordingly and employees updated with a new timeline for volume counts and restructures.

    We have shared this decision with our bargaining agents and will work with them to reschedule the volume count once the situation stabilizes.

    What you need to do

    • Use this talk track to share this news with your teams.
    • If you have questions please reach out to your Route Optimization Manager:
      • Atlantic: John Symonds
      • Quebec: Sylvain Gaudette
      • Ontario: Blake Bradshaw
      • GTA: Sandra Dyment
      • Prairie: Colin Gill
      • Pacific: Alain Pinard

    Does the new Knock, Drop and Go policy for Personal Contact Items apply to RSMCs?

    Yes. With the exception of Proof of Age, Proof of Identity or Customs Owing items, if the package does not fit in the mail receptacle, RSMCs are asked to deliver the item to the addressee. Scan the item, ring or knock on the door, leave the item and proceed to the next point of call. If at any point, the delivery employee believes the situation is unsafe, they should card the item or bring it back to the delivery facility and alert their Team Leader.

    Is Canada Post still delivering passports?

    The Government of Canada has stopped mailing passports to Canadians for the time being, so we will no longer be delivering them unless they are already in our network. Passports that are already in our network can be left at the delivery address, as part of our Knock, Drop and Go policy. Knock, Drop and Go means scan the item, knock on the door, leave the item and proceed on your route.

    Other urgent or sensitive documents will be sent via Xpresspost Certified, which can be left at the delivery address.

    Are you hiring more people to deal with volumes?

    We are working to manage our staffing levels and adding new team members, as needed.

    Will new employees receive proper training before being put on the job?

    First, employees must have experience and meet our requirements for the position. Second, all must complete our COVID-19 screening questionnaire before entering a Canada Post building to ensure they pose no health risk.

    As well, new hires are taken through our health and safety procedures, they are asked to review our Make it Safe, Make it Home website, and they are brought up to speed on processes and procedures on site. We will continue to take this approach in co-operation with the Local Joint Health and Safety Committee.

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    Retail / New processes

    Do Canada Post employees have to wear a face covering when visiting dealer post offices?

    Many of our largest dealer partners, including Shoppers Drug Mart and Jean Coutu, now require all visitors to their stores to wear a face covering. This applies to delivery agents picking up or dropping off items as well as RBMs, LAMs and LASs. While not all of our dealer partners have made this request, others may follow suit in the coming weeks.

    Please have a face covering with you and be prepared to wear it in order to respect the policy of the host business you are visiting.

    Make sure to handle and care for your face covering properly. Review the job aid on how to properly put on, remove and wash a face covering.

    Over the past few weeks, Canada Post distributed reusable washable face coverings to employees in Operations, Retail and other groups for use when physical distancing can be difficult. If you have not received a face covering and require one, speak to your team leader. You may use a personally supplied face covering, provided you use it properly.

    What is the process for handling Personal Contact Items at the retail counter?

    Effective immediately, you no longer need to ask the customer to sign for most signature items. This also applies to items for which signature is included in the purchase, such as Registered and Xpresspost Certified. The only exceptions are items that require Proof of Age (POA), Proof of Identity (POI) or Customs Owing items, which still require a signature.

    Proof of Age and Proof of Identity checks with customers wearing masks

    Despite changes to some processes, it remains Canada Post’s legal responsibility to validate a customer’s identity for all Proof of Age (POA) and Proof of Identity (POI) items.

    To perform this verification properly, ask customers wearing face masks to remove them briefly for identification purposes. We are confident this will pose minimal risk, given the policies and procedures currently in place, and the extent of other protective measures taken, such as physical distancing, cleaning protocols and protective barriers. Thank the customer for their understanding and, if necessary, explain that our obligation to perform due diligence has not changed.

    If a customer refuses to remove their face covering, you cannot complete the POA or POI process or deliver the item to the customer.

    Does the same apply to those wearing head or face coverings for religious reasons?

    Yes. According to the Canadian Civil Liberties Association (CCLA), “A woman will have to remove her niqab for identification purposes, but this could be done privately in the presence of women only.” Significant efforts should be made to ensure that any interference with religious freedom is as minimal as possible.

    Expired ID: We understand the challenges with renewing ID during these difficult times. Some provinces have announced an extension to the expiry dates on drivers’ licenses, health cards and other forms of provincial identification and are allowing ID with an expired date to continue to be valid.

    For transactions where we still need to capture ID, RPS will not allow you to enter an expiry date that has already passed. When this happens, your first choice should be to request another piece of government-issued ID from the customer where the expiry date has not yet passed.

    Refer to the Quick Reference Chart to see which transactions will allow expired ID to be used.

    Your safety matters most. If an upset customer threatens you and demands you hand over a package, give it to them without confrontation. Report the incident to your team leader as soon as it is safe to do so. Call the police to report any violence or threats, or if anything was stolen.

    Should retail employees continue to sell the signature option on products?

    No. Until further notice, we will not offer the signature option to customers.

    Senders will still have access to up-to-date tracking information and will receive confirmation of delivery – just without the receiver’s signature.

    How long do customers have to retrieve carded items?

    We have extended the return to sender (RTS) period for carded items. We will now hold carded items at Retail beyond the usual 15-day time limit. This gives customers more time to pick up their items, which lessens the risk that someone who should be self-isolating feels compelled to retrieve their item immediately.

    If you are already at or near maximum capacity for carded items, please advise your Retail Business Manager, Local Area Manager or Local Area Superintendent.

    Service Guarantee suspension Updated

    Canada Post is advising customers across the country to expect delays with parcel shipments and deliveries. Heavy parcel volumes, combined with the important safety measures we’ve implemented in our processing facilities mean longer processing times.

    Service guarantees displayed in RPS for all products, including Priority and Xpresspost, domestic and international, are suspended until further notice.

    Post offices will receive a new RPS sign insert to let customers know that service standards displayed on the InfoBoard have been suspended.

    Action: Remove the promotional RPS sign insert that you received in your poster kit, or the temporary black and white sign, and replace it with the new sign insert informing customers the delivery standards have been suspended.

    As required, advise customers there are no service guarantees on any of our products at this time and direct them to our website for further details. Customers should continue to track their parcels on our website or our mobile app for the latest information.

    It’s important for customers to understand that our call centre agents are open to serve, but have no further details if their items are delayed or if customers are looking for a status update.

    Insufficient and make-up postage

    What is the process now at Retail if Domestic, U.S. or International Lettermail has insufficient postage?

    To help reduce contact between customers and retail employees, any letters that are short paid in the mail stream should be delivered as if they were fully paid. Do not RTS these items.

    Any items found unpaid (no stamps, postage meter impression or indicia on mail items) in the mail stream are to continue to follow the current process.

    What process should I use for make-up postage?

    If a customer’s item needs more postage than what they have affixed to it, where possible, use postage labels printed from the RPS system in lieu of stamps from your inventory. This will minimize contact with the customer.

    Only accept properly packaged items

    For your safety and to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19, do not accept unpackaged items or offer to assist customers in packaging their items, including returns. Only accept items that have been properly packaged. If a customer approaches the counter with an unpackaged item, recommend our flat-rate boxes as an easy and affordable solution.

    If required, you can print and display the Please package and label your parcels poster from the Post Office Information Center, under Resources > Post Office Signage and Posters.

    Safety supplies (face coverings, hand sanitizer, disinfecting spray, gloves and paper towels) Updated

    We have provided safety barriers, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes/spray, paper towels and nitrile gloves to all post offices. Some offices were able to source products locally, and we would encourage you to continue to do so if you run low. If you don’t have hand sanitizer and are unable to find any locally, please take the time to wash your hands as often as possible throughout the day. Health experts agree that hand washing is the single most effective method of preventing the spread of the virus.

    Replenishing safety supplies: If your post office is running low on previously provided safety supplies (hand sanitizer, disinfecting spray, paper towels or gloves), advise your local team leader (LAS, LAM or RBM), who will be able to re-order supplies for you. Orders will be filled as supplies arrive in the warehouse and shipped directly to the post office. Orders for various supplies will not be consolidated and may not arrive at the same time. Some post offices are able to source these supplies locally, and may do so.

    Face Coverings: Recently, public health officials have suggested that where physical distancing is a challenge, wearing a face covering is an additional measure that can protect those around you. Health officials maintain that physical distancing and proper hand hygiene remain the most important ways to protect against the virus.

    Canada Post has installed plastic barriers in post offices to provide ongoing protection when serving customers without the need for face coverings. However, in post offices with multiple employees and limited space behind the counter or in the back room, maintaining the recommended physical distancing between employees can be challenging.

    At the end of May, we distributed two reusable face coverings to all employees who chose to wear them. These face coverings could be used safely for up to 30 days.

    Corporate post offices will soon receive a new allocation of face coverings. Each employee will receive two replacement face coverings and are asked to safely dispose of their old ones.

    The company-supplied face coverings are one-size fits all, loose-fitting masks that cover the nose and mouth, and have ear loops. All employees who receive face coverings are asked to review this job aid on how to properly put on, remove and wash a face covering.

    Personally supplied face coverings: If employees wish to wear a personally supplied face cover, they are free to do so. It is important that users of personal face coverings follow the manufacturer’s specifications for maintenance, care and handling of that equipment.

    We will continue to evaluate our approach based on the guidance of public health authorities and keep you informed of any changes.

    How should the Verifone key pad be sanitized?

    1. 1. Use a lightly-dampened, clean microfibre cloth or a clean paper towel, with a drop or two of pH-neutral, non-scrubbing soap (e.g. dish soap) or cleanser to gently clean the device.
    2. 2. After cleaning, the devices can be sanitized using an alcohol-based wipe or appropriate alcohol-based cleaner (approximately 70% to 90% strength isopropyl alcohol) applied to a microfibre cloth. If the wipe is too wet, wring some of the moisture out before using. Never add additional cleaning agents to a wipe.

    Warnings:

    • Never spray coat or pour any liquid, sanitizer or disinfectant directly onto the device.
    • Never use harsh detergents, abrasive cleansers, bleach, hydrogen peroxide, thinner, commercial degreasers, or acetone.
    • Refrain from scrubbing or rubbing vigorously with a dry towel, or shaking the terminal(s) as this could trigger a tamper alert.

    How should I clean other electronics (RPS screens, keyboards, computers, printers, etc.)?

    For post offices that have cleaning services provided by JLL or a contracted third party, regular cleaning is provided to all primary surface areas and high touch points (counters, postal box doors, door handles, light switches, cabinet handles, faucets, etc.). Contracted cleaning services will not clean any electronics, including your RPS touch screen, computers, printers and the Verifone pin pad. Following are some guidelines for the proper cleaning of these electronics. These guidelines conform to recommendations from the Government of Canada on proper cleaning and disinfecting. For your own safety, always wash your hands before and after cleaning anything.

    How to clean electronic surface areas (RPS screens and keyboards, computers, printers, etc.):

    1. 1. After washing your hands, put on protective gloves if available.
    2. 2. Power off or unplug the device before cleaning it.
    3. 3. Apply a few drops of soap, alcohol-based cleaner or household cleaner (like Fantastik) to a damp clean cloth or paper towel
    4. 4. A sanitizing wipe can also be used. If the wipe is too wet, wring some of the moisture out before using. Never add additional cleaning agents to a wipe.
    5. 5. Use a clean paper towel to dry off the electronic device once cleaned.
    6. 6. After the cleaning, properly remove and dispose of your gloves immediately. Refer to this job aid for proper procedure.
    7. 7. Wash your hands properly with warm water and soap again.
    8. 8. Contaminated disposable cleaning items should be placed in a lined garbage bin. Reusable cleaning items should be regularly washed in hot water (60 °C to 90 °C) with laundry soap.

    Warnings

    • Do not use too much soap or water. Too much liquid can damage the device.
    • Never spray cleaners directly on electronic devices. Apply the cleaning solution to a cloth or towel and then wipe down the device.
    • Never use acetone, thinners or commercial degreasers to clean devices.
    • Do not use a dry cloth or duster, as they can reintroduce viral droplets into the air.

    What more are you doing to keep us and our customers safe in Retail post offices? Updated

    We are taking action through a number of activities designed to protect your health and safety and the safety of our customers, while maintaining mail service to all Canadians.

    Parcel delivery and carding: To minimize customer contact we have revised our safe drop process for our Retail clerks and our delivery agents by removing the requirement to capture signatures for most deliveries to the door and for carded items. We have also extended the return to sender (RTS) period to keep carded items beyond the usual 15-day time limit at Retail. Providing customers with additional time lessens the risk that someone who should be self-isolating feels compelled to retrieve their item immediately.

    Physical distancing: For your safety and the safety of your customers, waiting customers should be spaced 2 metres (6 feet) apart. Signage and floor decals have been provided. For smaller offices, limit the number of customers in the office at any one time. If that means locking the doors and having customers queue outside, please do so.

    Most post offices will receive a new door decal to promote physical distancing. It is important to remove all previous door signage issued by Canada Post and replace it with this single door decal.

    Encourage paperless transactions: Please encourage all customers to use the tap function on their credit/debit cards whenever possible. If a customer is not able to pay by tap, we will continue to accept cash as a method of payment.

    Limiting PIN pad interactions with the customer: We suppressed as many processes as possible that require the customer to input information with the VeriFone PIN pad (mail forwarding, scale transactions, MoneyGram, money orders, etc.). Customers who do not wish to use the PIN pad can elect not to, and once the process times out (it takes 30 seconds) you can still complete the transaction within RPS.

    Stamp/coin allocations: Canada Post will not execute any forced allocations of new stamp or coin products until further notice. You can order new products as you would any product, and the warehouse will include these with your regular orders.

    Sales Focus Campaigns: To help post offices focus on providing essential mail and parcel services, the Sales Focus campaign for May and June has been cancelled.

    Physical inventory counts & Financial Control Review (FCR): For corporate post offices that were not able to complete their physical inventory count in March, we have postponed these counts until September 2020. Given the current challenges, FCRs may not be possible while physical distancing measures are in place. We will assess the impacts to achieve the 2020 FCR plan and communicate any amendments to the plan by the end of the summer.

    Limit emergency orders and use Direct Ship more often

    Our warehouse has reduced its staff to enable proper physical distancing practices. The primary focus for the warehouse at this time is the distribution of protective materials and safety supplies to post offices. To help support them, please refrain from calling the Order Management Centre (OMC) to place an emergency order for non-critical items. This will help make sure the shipping of protective materials remains a priority.

    You can help preserve your on-hand inventory by using Direct Ship to place orders that will be delivered directly to the customer’s address. Customers can also order items from home at canadapost.ca.

    What should I do with expired postal boxes?

    For boxes that expired on March 1, 2020, RPS will only maintain the customer data for 105 days past expiry. These postal boxes must be renewed prior to June 15, 2020, or they will revert to “vacant” in your system.

    Action:

    • Print the expiry/final notices for all postal boxes that expired on or before May 1 and place the notices in the customer’s postal box.
    • If you have not done so already, print the renewal notices for boxes expiring on June 1 and July 1 and place the notices in the customer’s postal box.

    Where can I find a list of countries no longer accepting mail?

    The list of countries with mail suspensions is updated daily on POIC and is printable. Click here, then scroll to International > Many destinations impacted > International suspensions > See details.

    Our local bank is closed. What should I do?

    Report the situation immediately to the Retail Help Desk at 1-800-267-1592.

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    Protective barriers

    Why did we select these barriers?

    • The chosen barriers were produced by a company that has supplied thousands of these shields to retailers like Pharmasave, IDA, M&M Meat Shops, Hasty Markets and many others.
    • The shields are light weight, durable, and easy to assemble and install to the ceiling.
    • They are a proven and reliable way to protect against Covid-19 while serving customers – they block respiratory droplets released through coughs and sneezes.

    What are barriers made of?

    • The shield is made of PVC (polyvinyl chloride), which is resistant to aging and discolouration.
    • They provide for better transmission of sound over thicker acrylic barriers.
    • PVC is impermeable to germs and can be easily cleaned using dish soap or alcohol-based cleaners.
    • Barriers made with other materials can be damaged or become cloudy if cleaned with the wrong cleansers.
    • The thickness level of these barriers has no bearing on the level of safety provided. They provide the same level of safety against the virus as the thicker acrylic ones.

    Why did we go with a hanging barrier?

    • Since our post offices come in many different configurations, we needed a solution that could be adaptable to the largest number of counter layouts.
    • The hanging option is light weight and can be installed and maintained easily.
    • Countertop barriers can be difficult to properly clean and sterilize, particularly at the base.
    • Hanging barriers like ours provide safety to our employees from coughing or sneezing customers, while still allowing for the handling of items over the counter.

    How to clean the protective barrier

    The barrier is made of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) which is impermeable to germs and can be easily cleaned using a clean soft cloth (no abrasive or rigid materials) and warm water with a mild liquid dish soap. Ensure you are cleaning the barrier safely, using a ladder if required, and maintaining three points of contact (both feet and one hand) with steady surfaces at all times.

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    Leave

    I have not been able to find care for my family as a result of COVID-19. Can I continue to take Special Paid Leave for child or elder care? New

    All employees are asked to make every reasonable effort to find alternative measures to meet their child and elder care obligations. These measures may include family members, private professional support, private and public daycare, summer camps, etc. If alternative arrangements are not possible as a result of COVID-19, alternative workplace accommodations should also be considered including working a different shift, part-time hours, weekends, etc. Please review with your Team Leader or your HRBP.

    Additionally, all employees, with the exception of those represented by PSAC, must exhaust their Personal Days first prior to accessing Special Paid Leave. This means, the new personal day quotas granted on July 1 must be exhausted prior to requesting Special Paid Leave.

    Can I cancel my planned vacation leave and take Special Paid Leave for child or elder care instead? New

    No, all planned vacation leave on or after June 1 must be taken. Planned vacation leave cannot be cancelled and replaced with Special Paid Leave.

    Do I have to use my Personal Days prior to accessing Special Paid Leave for child or elder care? New

    All employees, with the exception of those represented by PSAC, must exhaust their Personal Days first prior to accessing Special Paid Leave. This means, the new personal day quotas granted on July 1 must be exhausted prior to being coded Special Paid Leave.

    Who is required to be in quarantine / self-isolation?

    • All employees who returned from international travel (including the U.S.) since March 14
    • Employees who returned from Hubei Province (China), Iran or Italy prior to March 14
    • Employees who returned from any other country prior to March 14 and had symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) are required to contact Public Health or their physician to determine the need for them to be quarantined.
    • Employees who left Canada on or after March 16 and are returning are required to quarantine for 14 days but will not be entitled to Quarantine Leave through Canada Post.
    • Anyone directed to quarantine by their public health authority or medical physician based on symptoms and exposure.

    Will I be paid if I am in quarantine?

    We are working on a simple process for quarantined employees so they can access paid leave without delay. It applies to the following:

    1. 1. An employee who exhibits symptoms of COVID-19 – whether or not they have travelled – and must self-quarantine for 14 days.
    2. 2. Upon return to Canada: An employee who has returned from any international travel, or has been in prolonged close personal contact with someone who has returned from international travel and the traveller is exhibiting symptoms, must self-quarantine for 14 days.

    Employees are asked to advise their team leader who will open a case with Canada Life and provide further instructions. Canada Life will monitor the case and advise when the employee can safely return to work. If the illness persists, the employee may be eligible for STDP.

    Please note, on March 13, 2020 the Government of Canada directed all Canadians to cancel non-essential international travel. Therefore, if an employee decided to depart the country following this directive (departing on or after March 16, 2020) they will not be eligible for paid quarantine leave and will be expected to use other leave available to them such as personal days, annual leave and leave without pay.

    What help is available for employees who need to care for their children due to school and daycare closures?

    We want to support employees and offer some peace of mind as they seek child-care alternatives. Our approach combines the use of existing personal days and special leave provisions. We have updated our process by allowing for Special Leave beyond April 10 and until further notice, an approach that aligns with the Government of Canada.

    Employees in this situation should talk to their team leader and continue seeking alternative care arrangements.

    You can also share with your employees the following information on child-care options that are available in provinces and territories.

    The following job aid will help you enter leave codes in SAP.

    What help is available for employees who care for an elder?

    The same policy we’ve adopted for Special Leave for child care will also apply to elder care.

    Employees who need to care for elderly parents should talk to their team leaders and continue seeking alternative care arrangements. If needed, the following three-stage approach is now in place to help. As well, we have updated our process by allowing for Special Leave up to April 10.

    1. 1. Employees in this situation must use their remaining personal days first.
    2. 2. Team leaders can now approve Special Leave (code 9200) up to April 10.
    3. 3. If further leave is required following the additional leave, the team leader will escalate to their general manager for review and receive a timely decision.

    Employees who work in an office setting are encouraged to continue seeking alternative care arrangements for elderly parents and talk with their team leaders. If needed:

    • Discuss the option of working from home with their team leader (if they haven’t already been asked to work from home).
    • This needs to be approved by their general manager via email, copying their Human Resources Business Partner (HRBP).

    How does someone change vacation leave that they had booked earlier?

    Given the exceptional circumstances around COVID-19, all employees in MGT & Exempt and those represented by PSAC, CUPW, APOC and CPAA are allowed to cancel vacation leave previously booked up to and including May 30, 2020.

    An employee who is cancelling vacation must advise their team leader. However, the options and processes are different for each employee group. Please choose from the following list for more information:

    I don’t qualify for paid quarantine leave. Am I entitled to any form of compensation while away from work?

    Yes, through Employment Insurance (EI). To apply, you’ll need a Record of Employment (ROE).

    Contact your team leader, who can request this for you.

    Can I get a Record of Employment (ROE)?

    • Employees are eligible for a Record of Employment if they find themselves under one of the following situations:
      • No work available – After seven consecutive calendar days with no work
      • Unable to work (Quarantine, Child Care, Illness, High-Risk Group) and no access to paid leave through Canada Post

    How does an employee request a Record of Employment?

    • To request a Record of employment, contact AccessHR at 1-877-807-9090.
    • Provide your employee ID number, your last day paid (if known) and the reason for your request (For example: No work available; Quarantine, Caregiving for Covid-19; COVID-19 high-risk group)
    • ROEs are automatically sent to Service Canada.

    You can retrieve and print the ROE on the Service Canada website if you want a hard copy.

    How do I contact Service Canada?

    You can call Service Canada at 1-866-372-7742, or click here.

    Short Term Disability Plan (STDP):

    1. How will employees apply for benefits under the Short-term Disability Program (STDP)?

      Employees will continue to follow the regular process to apply for STDP benefits unrelated to COVID-19. The usual waiting periods continue to apply. 

    2. Will medical documentation be required in new STDP claims?

      Employees who are able to obtain an attending physician’s statement or equivalent medical documentation should continue to do so. We recognize some employees may have difficulty obtaining this documentation during this busy period, so have temporarily waived the deadline to submit. Salary continuance will be extended beyond the 16-day deadline to ensure there is no disruption to the employee’s benefits, as long as the employee continues to make a demonstrable effort to obtain the required documentation.

    3. Will medical documentation be required for continuing STDP claims?

      Case managers will work with employees to ensure sufficient documentation is on file to continue ongoing support in STDP claims. The deadline to submit medical documentation in files is temporarily waived to ensure there is no disruption in benefits in the event documentation cannot be provided. 

    4. What if I was on Quarantine Leave and I then need to apply for STDP? Will additional medical documentation be required? Will I need to serve a waiting period prior to receiving STDP?

      An STDP claim will be initiated for employees requiring additional time away from work following the 14-day quarantine period due to continuing symptoms or a diagnosis of COVID-19. Quarantine leave will satisfy the waiting period for STDP. An attending physician’s statement will not be required. Instead, employees will be asked to complete the “Confirmation of Illness Form”. This form has been developed by the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association (CLHIA) to manage COVID-19 related STDP claims. A physician’s signature is not required.

    What is the process for employees to return to work following a 14-day quarantine leave?

    Employees who are on Quarantine Leave will receive an automated phone call from the Disability Management team that will help determine if they should return to work or if their situation requires further review.

    This new automated call will be for employees who were placed on a 14-day Quarantine Leave if they:

    • Were symptomatic
    • Came in contact with someone who has been exposed to COVID-19
    • Have come back from international travel

    Employees placed on Quarantine Leave for these reasons can now be cleared to return to work by Canada Post if their leave requires no further review. Our process for having employees return to work continues to align with Canada Life and the recommendations of public health authorities.

    Employees on Quarantine Leave should look for a call from the phone number: 1‑866‑325‑0052 with the caller ID of Canada Post.

    During the automated call, employees will be asked to confirm their employee ID and complete a short screening assessment that will help determine if they can return to work or if their file requires further evaluation.

    Employees who have reached the end of their quarantine, but might not have been available to take the automated call, can call 1 866 325 0052 to go through the clearance process for returning to work.

    Employees who are cleared to return to work will be asked to contact their team leader to confirm details of their next shift.

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