Proponents of Windsor’s west end came out in full force to pledge their support to save the Sandwich Post office after Canada Post announced that they had entered a 30 day community consultation period regarding its closure.
Roughly 150 members of the community, politicians and media alike gathered outside of the Sandwich post office to demonstrate support for both the post office itself, as well as the west end as a whole.
While Sandwich town has been hit hard as of late – the announced closure of Forrester Secondary school and years of trouble regarding boarded up homes as a result of the border issue – residents are rallying together in an attempt to preserve the historic community which dates back to the years prior to the War of 1812.
“We’re here to tell Canada Post no,” commented Windsor West MP Brian Masse, adding that the rally was intended to “show support that we need postal service here in Windsor.”
Masse believes that services will diminish across the city if the Sandwich post office were to close and that “we will lose this historic location. It’s important for seniors, people with disabilities and students to have this open.”
City Councilor Ron Jones commented that he was encouraged by the fact that Mayor Francis had received calls from Canada Post asking for a meeting regarding the Sandwich Post office and that he has “every bit of trust that the mayor will represent the people”.
“We were here a year and a half ago…why are we here again?” expressed Jones, adding,
“Is there something that we as a community, as city government, in terms of city partnerships [that can] keep this building open?”
West end advocate Fabio Constante explained that losing the Sandwich post office would be a “big blow to the area” and that the building is significant for the area because of its historical value. “It’s an integral piece of the fabric of Sandwich Town and its history speaks for itself.”
Most concerning to Constante is that the government made a decision unilaterally without the consent or without the consultation of the broad public. “That’s a big concern for us. From a pragmatic point of view, I think it’s best if we all sat down, looked at the business case, [and] looked to see if the community could come together to save this landmark.”
Masse explained that his office asked for Canada Post’s business plan regarding the closure and that he was told no., which according to him is unacceptable as Canada Post is a crown corporation beholden to the public. “It is unacceptable that a public corporation … can try to hide behind the documents that you and your family own. That is your information, that is your money, and they’re not going to get away with this.”
“If you hit us and knock us down, you better back up and hit us again, because we’re coming after you,” emphatically stated Masse.
Jonathon Liedtke is the Features & Opinion Editor for the University of Windsor Lance Campus/Community Newspaper and a reporter for ourWindsor.ca. As a founding member and current Co-Chair of the Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee, he is committed to representing, connecting, engaging with and advocating for local youth. He is also a member of Windsor’s “Punk with Horns” band The Nefidovs, and as such, is committed to enhancing and sustaining the arts community.