By The Canadian Press
OTTAWA – The Senate is holding a rare Saturday sitting to debate legislation that would order postal workers back to work.
The bill passed the House of Commons during a special session early Saturday morning by a vote of 166 to 43.
Senators are sitting on Saturday, and on Sunday if necessary, to deal with the bill, which will go into effect at noon eastern time on the day following royal assent.
Members of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers have held rotating walkouts for a month, causing massive backlogs of unsorted mail and packages at postal depots.
Canada Post says it could take weeks — even stretching into 2019 — to clear the backlog that has built up, especially at major sorting centres in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver.
CUPW’s 50,000 members, in two groups, are demanding better pay for rural and suburban carriers, more job security and minimum guaranteed hours.