Buzzard Press

Jan Simpson


Historic Election at CUPW: Postal Workers Elect First Female Black President

Friday May 17 2019
A record number of women also elected to the National Executive Committee

For Immediate Release

OTTAWA – The Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) has elected Jan Simpson, a postal worker from the Scarborough local, as the union’s new National President. She becomes the first black woman to lead a national union in Canada. Julee Sanderson from the Saskatoon local was elected 1st National Vice-President. Bev Collins was re-elected as National Secretary-Treasurer.

Simpson has been breaking barriers at CUPW for many years. She was the first black woman elected to the national office and to the national board. “I am truly honoured to be a part of a progressive union that values diversity and continues to challenge the status quo.”

She promises to continue to fight against back-to-work legislation and get Canada Post back to the negotiating table. “Our members need a new contract. This arbitration has gone on for far too long. Our members need safe working conditions, fair wages and equality for all.”

With a federal election less than six months away, Simpson vows to make postal issues an electoral priority for all candidates and all citizens.

Simpson promises to fight for a renewed and reinvigorated post office by supporting the Delivering Community Power campaign. “The post office of the future must include new and expanded services like postal banking, services to seniors and climate-friendly delivery models. The time for change is now.”

In another historic first, a record number of women were elected to the National Executive Committee.

At the convention, held in Toronto May 13-17, about 575 delegates representing CUPW membership worked on union policy and elected national and regional leadership. They also marched to Nathan Philips Square with Foodora bike and car couriers who are unionizing with CUPW. The next CUPW national convention will be in 2023.


For more information, please contact Emilie Tobin, CUPW Communications – or 613-882-2742.


As Canadian of Bajan descent, Jan Simpson came to Canada when she was three years old. she started working at Canada Post in 1985 as a Postal Clerk in the Sortation plant in Toronto. Jan Simpson worked in various letter depots and currently hold a bilingual retail position in a Canada Post Corporate store. She has been active in her community and within the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW) for many years. In 2007 Sister Simpson started organizing for CUPW and found this both rewarding and challenging. She has been involved in various organizing campaigns for CUPW, including couriers and retail counters. At the 2011 National Convention, Jan Simpson was elected to the position of National Union Representative responsible for External Organizing making her the first black woman elected to the National office of CUPW. Jan Simpson is using this portfolio as a platform to improve the working conditions of workers across the country and defend workers’ rights against the attacks of this government.