On this week’s episode of Talking Radical Radio, I speak with Wendy Goldsmith and David Heap of Londoners for Door to Door — a group of residents of London, Ontario, who have been mounting an impressive grassroots, community-based campaign against the proposal by Canada Post to cut home delivery in their city and across the country.
It was at the end of 2013 that Canada Post announced that it would be making massive changes and cuts. It would be raising prices significantly, and — along with slashing many jobs — it would be ending the practice of home delivery for letters and parcels, and instead retrofitting already-developed communities with giant, centralized, self-serve mailboxes.
Sentiment against these changes and cuts is significant in most communities, but the extent to which that disgruntlement has turned into organized opposition has varied considerably from city to city. One place which has been seen considerable success in mobilizing around this issue is London, Ontario — a city of about 350,000 people in the southwest of the province that has been named as one of the early sites to be hit by the multi-year phase-in of the end to home delivery. Londoners for Door to Door started among impacted community members and connected with Canadian Union of Postal Workers members, and it has been running a solid campaign built on a bedrock of door-to-door canvassing. This hard but effective work of knocking on doors and speaking directly to people has been augmented by community events, online presence, and social media. They have been building on existing relationships and forging new ones, and reaching into new territories and across old divisions to build some impressive momentum.
Wendy Goldsmith and David Heap are residents of London and are founding members of Londoners for Door to Door. They speak with me about the cuts and changes at Canada Post and their relationship to the broader agenda of austerity, and about their campaign’s origins, its choices of tactics, the considerable momentum they’ve managed to build, and their advice for other communities that wish to build their own local resistance.
To learn more about Londoners for Door to Door, click here.
Talking Radical Radio brings you grassroots voices from across Canada. We give you the chance to hear many different people that are facing many different struggles talk about what they do, why they do it, and how they do it, in the belief that such listening is a crucial step in strengthening all of our efforts to change the world. To learn more about the show in general, visit its website here. You can learn about suggesting topics for future shows here.
Talking Radical Radio is brought to you by Scott Neigh, a writer, media producer, and activist based in Sudbury, Ontario, and the author of two books examining Canadian history through the stories of activists.