A slight majority of rural residents would prefer to collect their mail in town to avoid mail theft.
With the continuing issue of rural mail theft, Ponoka News’ most recent web poll asked the question: Would you prefer to have mail delivered to the post office in town to avoid rural mail theft or vandalism?
Of the 83 responses, 44 (53 per cent) voted in favour while 38 (46 per cent) were against the idea. There was one vote of ‘unsure’.
Those who took part in the poll have mixed feelings. For some, the question of convenience with mail close to home is no longer worth the risk.
That was Crystal Currier-Schultz’s sentiment: “At this rate, I would prefer to have our mail delivered to the post office and I can pick it up there.”
“I’m tired of replacing our locks that have been cut off and trying to figure out what mail they took,” she added.
Countering that was Janice Kary, who took issue with the added cost on her family if the mailboxes were moved to town. “It doesn’t cost anything to have it out in the country whereas it costs quite a bit to drive to Ponoka 10 kms to get a secure mailbox that could be given to us on Morning Meadows Subdivision!”
She added that the current mailboxes are quite old and suggests that putting up security cameras would help identify the suspects.
For Felicity Docken, it was a straight up, “No.”
“I like having my mail delivered to me rather than having to drive into town,” said Docken. “Upgrade the boxes. Don’t make all suffer because of little punks.”
Ponoka News spoke with Canada Post about the issues of theft. In an email response, a company representative stated they are aware of the problems in Ponoka County.
“These were reported to Canada Post Security and Investigations and to the police. We take these matters and the security of the mail very seriously,” said Sylvie Lapointe, media relations.
She pointed out that these criminals are determined to steal regardless of the the target.
Kathy Layden’s experience was quite similar to what Lapointe said.
“We had ours broken into and they pried them open (and) broke all the locks. Couldn’t tell until you went to check your mail; new rural boxes too!” stated Layden.
“It takes an equal level of determination to deter and stop those who commit property crimes and we, at Canada Post, are committed to do everything possible to support the police in their efforts to do so. While we will not provide specifics, our efforts involve everything from equipment, to monitoring, to working closely with police,” said Lapointe.
For rural resident who prefer to get their mail close to home, it doesn’t look like that is going to change any time soon.
“Each officially recognized address in Canada is entitled to one free primary mode of delivery per civic/physical address regardless of number of occupants or relationships therein as determined by Canada Post,” states Lapointe.
Check back for our weekly polls at ponokanews.com/web-poll for more questions related to Ponoka or other community issues.
Editor’s note: Some comments have been edited for grammar. Ponoka News’ web polls are a way to engage with readers and to get an understanding of important community issues and are not official petitions.