A new privately owned company called You Have Mail is preparing to fill the niche of home delivery once Canada Post stops delivering mail to individual homes.
“Continue to receive your mail at home,” promises the website of the Canadian upstart. "We know that with busy schedules, retrieving mail is the last thing you want to worry about, and we can help."
The company will start its service on Oct. 20 — the same day several urban communities start losing door delivery, as per Canada Post’s five-year transition plan.
With You Have Mail, you can pay $20 to have mail delivered twice a week (Monday and Wednesday), or $30 for three deliveries per week.
There’s a corporate option of daily delivery for $60 dollars monthly, and for $5 more, You Have Mail will filter your junk mail.
The CEO of You Have Mail, Dan Trudeau, said his business has already been inundated with requests — particularly from seniors and small businesses.
"There's a lot of people who still need that service, because they're just not capable of going to the community box," he said.
"We should have the right to decide whether we want door-to-door or not," he added.
Canada Post has refused to comment on the arrival of the new private service.
New service in Quebec in 2015
As of Oct. 20, the Winnipeg-based company will offer its services in three cities: Winnipeg, Calgary and Fort McMurray, Alta. Trudeau said the company is aiming to serve Quebec in 2015.
Nearly 100,000 homes and 10,000 businesses will lose at-the-door delivery service next month. More will follow next spring, including the cities of the southern Montreal suburbs, and some Montreal boroughs.
Indirect privatization, says postal workers union
The union representing postal workers is not surprised this company popped up.
"We expected this kind of situation," says the president of the Montreal local union, Alain Duguay. "Slowly, we are moving towards privatization, market liberalization.”
Canada Post said over the summer that residents with doctor’s notes could continue to receive mail at home, but the union is skeptical that people will do that — either because they find the process degrading, or because the disability is only temporary.
But this new venture is not without its challenges: You Have Mail must turn a profit where Canada Post lost money. Economist Germain Belzile says that’s not impossible.
"Maybe this company is able to operate with lower production costs," he said.
"This is the miracle of capitalism: people are constantly looking for a business opportunity and an opportunity to fill a need. "
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