A Canada Post worker from Toronto has been fired by mail after telling CBC News about concerns he had regarding overtime pay.

Mars Bazrafshan, a postal worker from Toronto, was in Ottawa picketing at the Canada Post head office Tuesday when he learned of his firing in a letter from his employer.

Bazrafshan spoke out against his now former employer last week, saying the federal agency was using its discipline system to intimidate workers into not claiming overtime when they worked extra hours.

Now the man is out of a job, but he knows any grievance he files will take a long time to settle.

"The whole internal grievance system has to be exhausted. Maybe after a year or so I'll pursue this outside of Canada Post because the system is totally broken," said Bazrafshan, who was one of a few postal workers who came to CBC News with their complaints.

Admits grievance backlog

Canada Post admits it has a backlog of about 50,000 grievances for 52,000 unionized members. More than 700 are dismissal cases.

Spokesman John Hamilton has said the delivery routes are planned out for an eight-hour shift. He added if a worker "consistently" uses overtime for those shifts, Canada Post has to investigate.

Canada Post has to adjust to a steep decline in letter mail, Hamilton added, and the process has been stressful for everyone.

"You know with that many grievances, you've got to work at them one at a time, and we can't just deploy hundreds of thousands of people to try and work through that backlog if they're going to keep coming in," said Hamilton.

A couple other postal workers are picketing in Ottawa to support Bazrafshan, but they still have jobs.

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