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John Blomander, Estevan letter carrier

Shame on Canada Post!

John Blomander

John passed away March 2, 2005 at the age of 47. He had not yet cleared his name… We do not know the circumstances of his death but we do know that the slanders against him had put him under extraordinary stress.

May 11, 2003: Still no justice for the bullies in the John Blomander case.

The union turned back a legitimate grievance -- settling it with management without John Blomander's knowledge or presence.

Canada Post continues to harrass and bully. The route was finally downsized but Blomander has yet to receive compensation for the extra half hour a day which they acknowledged he was owed.

He has been harrassed about wearing a parka and refusing to criss-cross (jay-walking which is illegal).

Sun Life has not been compensated for the money which an arbitrater ordered Canada Post to pay.

WCB has not appealed a decision that Canada Post received from the overturning of an original decision in Blomander's favour -- if you don't know the background to this case, read through the pages posted here.

June 20, 2002: inJusticebusters received a powerful e-mail from John Blomander's brother Bill who lives in the U.S. Bill is incensed at how his brother -- and his family name have been slandered with the vicious lies John Blomander's employers fabricated: that John is insane from an insane family. Bill Blomander is looking seriously at suing for libel. inJusticebusters believe John should do the same.

The Saskatchewan government has just settled with John Popowich, acknowledging that to be portrayed as a Satanic child sex molester is extremely damaging. Certainly to be portrayed as a mad letter carrier is also extremely damaging. Popowich was able to prove there was no truth to the allegation and John Blomander can prove that as well.

Defamed Estevan postie John Blomander:
"I won't quit until justice has been done"

Information he received through the Privacy Act shows he was smeared as a crazy man

John BlomanderI met with John Blomander at Arbie's on 22nd St. He had with him three large dufflebags full of well organized files. I had first spoken with him on the telephone about February 18, 2001 when he gave me the gist of his story and faxed me some incredible documents he had received under the privacy act.

Imagine if you had received documents such as this one (by Bruce Lindsay) or this one (from the Labour Relations Board), and you suddenly realized that one of the reasons people were treating you so badly was that they had been poisoned by lies.

These documents disclosed his employer had fabricated damaging lies about him: that his father (who died of cancer at the age at 54) was an alcoholic who dies "young" of a heart attack, that his mother had committed suicide when he was young (in fact she of an accidental overdose when John was 20, five years after his father), that his brother was in an institution for the criminally insane (false), that a letter carrier's daughter had told her father that John had told her he was going to go to work and shoot somebody, and that he had a long history of mental illness and was a "ticking time bomb" waiting to explode.

Even though Blomander had been softspoken on the phone, I was nervous about meeting him.

The man I talked to admitted he was under some stress but he assured me that he had no previous history of mental illness, that he had not ever been violent and that he had never fired much less owned a firearm. Our conversation was pleasant. -- Sheila Steele, March 7, 2001

March 13, 2002: John went back to work for a few months. Nothing was done to improve his situation. He was once more expected to do the disputed route, although some adjustments were made. He is presently recovering from hip-ball replacement surgery one one side and will have the other side done when he is healed.

John Blomander's Story

John Blomander started his job with the Estevan Post Office in 1982. He liked being a letter carrier then and he would like to get back to it now. The only problem with the job in 1984 is that the route he was given was the largest route of the seven routes in Estevan and that he was expected to complete his job in less time than was allowed for smaller routes. A simple mathematical problem, right? Wrong. Informal complaints were ignored. John then asked for an assessment of his route. This was also ignored. Not only were his requests ignored but Blomander became the subject of ridicule and harassment within the post office. It was suggested he was "slow" or just "couldn't keep up." There were also comments that he has let his personal appearance slip.

Nonetheless, John Blomander did his job and in 1988 he entered a competition sponsored by Canada Post. He won the Einstein award for coming up with an idea to improve the design of the superboxes. Part of the prize was a trip to Ottawa to attend an awards ceremony.

The post office rules specifically forbid the practice of "criss-crossing," that is, jaywalking back and forth across the street to get the mail delivered faster. Many of his co-workers did this and were often finished several hours early. His already oversized route kept expanding and Blomander took the time that was necessary to complete the route -- about an hour and a half more than he was alotted. He didn't claim overtime because the atmosphere was so poisoned that he feared he would be fired. Over seven years, John Blomander claimed only 110 hours of overtime. Eventually he was exhausted and took sick leave for stress.

Part of this stress involved John Blomander's need to reassure himself and others that he was reasonable in his request to have his route reduced. (That same route was divided into three in 1994.)

Blomander arranged to have pictures taken. Above is his work station, below, left the containers ready to load, and right, the parcels and the van fully loaded for the daily delivery.

When management learned he had taken pictures, he was told he could face criminal charges because he took pictures of people's mail. inJusticebusters challenge anyone to read a name on any letter or parcel.

At his own expense, Blomander hired a private investigator to compare the routes and to observe how the mail was delivered. The report he received included videotape of major criss-crossing and a worker using a taxi to deliver the mail on part of his route.

On October 8, 1997, G. Van Eaton submitted his report on the meeting with John Blomander on behalf of the two-member WCB panel. Blomander feels this report truthfully reflects his situation. It is posted here. Van Eaton Report: Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9

The Leader Post carried John Blomander's story in 1997. News clippings are also posted. August 26, 1997: 1 | 2 | Dec. 19, 1997

Workman's Compensation, Canada Post management and the union have now all conspired to cover up the injustice done to John Blomander. We will provide details in the weeks to come.

We will continue to add to this page. The injustice which has been done to John Blomander stuns the imagination. Management first refused to address his initial complaint, using procedural gobbledegook to cover up the fact that his route was measurably much too large. As if that was not enough, (and we know that this happens all the time), they defamed him to his co-workers, his fellow workers, and anyone who would listen as the kind of mad postal worker who commits the kind of headline making crimes that scare the public half to death . It is important to keep in mind that John had no mental health history and no record, official or otherwise of any kind of violence. He clearly states he believes most disputes can be resolved through nonviolent means.

Blomander received. through the Privacy Act, in Jan., 1998, the stunning lies that management had told to the Worker's Comp. Board and learned for the first time that in 1995 Post Office Security in Winnipeg had contacted the Estevan City Police, on September 20, 1995 on the request of Post Office manager Ian Irwin warning them that Blomander, an "unusual individual" would be receiving some bad news shortly regarding his WCB and insurance claim and " . . .were concerned about how he may react. Sergeant R[e]nwick agreed to create an intelligence file on John and would make all members of the Estevan police aware of the possibility of John acting up. He states that the police are ready to assist in any way." Interestingly enough, John himself did not receive the "bad news" until Feb. 1996.

A civil suit dragged on for two years and finally the Court dismissed it, told him "defamation is part of the collective agreement" and that his only remedy would be to take it up through the union. He went to the union who refused to file his grievance. On January 31, 2001, he received from CUPW, Winnipeg an express post including forms advising him to file his own grievance and to expect a prompt response. He filed his grievance regarding defamation, discriminatin and the over-assessed route Feb. 7 by fax to Winnipeg and Ottawa CUPW. On Feb. 26, he filed additional grievances and asked for a prompt reply. As of this writing, March 13, 2001, he has heard nothing from them.

Even though John Blomander has been exonerated by the Van Eaton Report, he has not yet received the justice which it has been recommended he receive. There is egg on the faces of the Post Office Management. Through the typical Saskatchewan method of death by slander and harassment they told lies ( 1 | 2 ) which failed to kill him. Having failed to kill him, they are using stalling tactics to cover their sorry asses. (We will continue to publish material Blomander received through the Privacy Act.)

inJusticebusters suspect that there are other cases in the post office which compare to this one. We are interested in hearing from anyone who has been driven out of their job or who is hanging on by the skin of their teeth. Meanwhile John Blomander is asking for the overtime that is due to him, damages for the harm done to his health and reputation and that those who wronged him be made to properly account for their actions.

John Blomander currently has a case pending before the Canadian Human Rights Commission.