Regarding COVID-19

June 15,  2020

Dear Community,

During the COVID-19 pandemic, I’ve been very proud of the work that our staff and board of directors have put into keeping our doors open, all the while keeping the health and safety of our users as our top priority. As Ontario begins to re-open and we find our collective new normal, I want to make a few updates.

We have made some ongoing changes in the interest of health and safety. Our front-line staff continues to regularly clean and sanitize common surfaces and their hands. The post is very much a hands-on service and so, as they interact with customers, staff will decide on the best way to avoid close contact. They may keep their distance, stay behind a Plexiglass barrier, and may also be wearing a mask and gloves. When you visit, we ask that you stand 2m from the customer ahead of you in line. To keep the line moving as quickly and as smoothly as possible, staff may ask if anyone is dropping off pre-paid items or are picking up from a post office box. Your patience is much appreciated.

Our next step is to bring our temporarily shortened hours back to our regular 7 day schedule. Beginning today, June 15, we are open:

Monday-Friday 9:00am – 5:30pm
Saturday 10:00am – 4:00pm
Sunday 12:00pm – 4:00pm

I would also like to thank our community for helping us navigate these challenges. You have helped us to navigate some very stormy seas by sending well-wishes and donations, by using the postal counter and by doing so safely, by attending our virtual events, and by letting us know in so many ways that we are all in this together. Thank you so much.

Stay safe and stay in touch,

Kat Akerfeldt
Executive Director
Toronto’s First Post Office | The Town of York Historical Society

March 24, 2020

Dear Community,

I wanted to write with an update. Yesterday, Mayor Tory declared a State of Emergency, and Premier Ford announced that non-essential businesses would be shut down for two weeks. Later, the list of essential services were released, and post offices were on that list. Therefore, we will remain open.

I wrote to you last week with our reduced hours. They are:

Monday – Saturday: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Sunday: closed

If you are elderly or immune-compromised, we would like you to stay at home. If your incoming mail isn’t essential, we would like you to stay at home. The mail in your post office box will still be here after the lockdown. Many companies are extending their returns policy or allowing longer times for filing of documents or payments. If it is not necessary to send mail, we would like you to stay at home.

Toronto’s First Post Office offers a mail forwarding service for our post office box holders. If you would like to learn more about having your mail forwarded from your box to your home, please get in touch. At this time, we will only set up this service via the email address or phone number on file with your box rental information.

Finally, if you do need to leave your home, I would like to remind you to maintain your distance. We have added tape to the floor of the post office to remind visitors to stay 2m away from others. We would also like to encourage you to pay using tap.

All of our announcements related to COVID-19 are also being posted at TownofYork.com. But if you have any questions or concerns, please reach out by email (just reply to this message) or by phone at 416-865-1833.

Stay in touch,

Kat Akerfeldt
Executive Director
Toronto’s First Post Office | The Town of York Historical Society

March 18, 2020

Dear Community,

As with so many other organizations, the economic effects of COVID-19 have hit Toronto’s First Post Office fast and hard. We are taking steps to ensure that we strike a balance between service to our community, and our financial responsibilities.

Therefore, effective this Saturday, March 21, our hours will be temporarily changing. 

From this Saturday, we will be open:
Monday – Saturday: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Sunday: closed

I have been in communication with Canada Post. They are in agreement with me that the post should be considered an essential service, never more so than in uncertain times. I have heard in the past few days from concerned members of our community, and I want to assure all of you: we will remain open.

However, Toronto’s First Post Office is operated by the Town of York Historical Society, a non-profit that exists to share the history of the Town of York and early Toronto, and the history of communication in Canada, 1793-1851. The postal counter and shop are major parts of our fundraising efforts that allows us to operate the museum. We are making these changes now because we want to make sure that Toronto’s First Post Office can continue to operate into the future.

All of our announcements related to COVID-19 are also being posted here at TownofYork.com. But if you have any questions or concerns, please reach out by email at info@TOs1stPO.com or by phone at 416-865-1833.

I especially encourage our box-holders to reach out if this change will mean a hardship for you. We might be able to arrange after-hours pick-ups.

Stay in touch,

Kat Akerfeldt
Executive Director
Toronto’s First Post Office | The Town of York Historical Society

March 16, 2020

Dear Community,

As the world faces an unprecedented and rapidly changing situation, Toronto’s First Post Office is carefully evaluating how best to serve our visitors and community. We would like you to know the following:

  • The post office counter is operating, and mail is available to be collected from post office boxes, but the museum is effectively closed.
  • The Public Health Agency of Canada and the World Health Organization continue to state that there is a very low risk regarding incoming mail items.
  • We have increased cleaning and sanitizing practices in the Post Office. Staff are being reminded to practice good hand hygiene and to stay home if they need to. Where possible, staff are working from home. Our on-site volunteers have been asked not to come in.
  • All museum programs, rentals, and workshops up to April 14th have been cancelled or postponed. Those who have registered will be contacted today.
  • Quills and ink have been removed from the Reading Room.
  • If  your post office box is due for renewal in March and you are unable to come in to renew, don’t worry. We won’t close your box or return your mail. Instead, another reminder will be issued, due at the end of April. Please note that you can always renew by phone, with a credit card.
  • If you can put off picking up or sending mail or packages, please leave it as long as possible to avoid the travel. We’ll keep your mail safe until you next come in.
  • However, if you have essential mail or packages waiting for you, we encourage you to pick it up sooner rather than later. We can’t predict the future, and we may need to reduce our open hours or close entirely.

We will continue to do our best to work with our customers, box-holders and Canada Post to minimize disruption during these turbulent times. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask. The quickest way to reach me is by email at info@TOs1stPO.com.

Thank you,

Kat Akerfeldt
Executive Director
Toronto’s First Post Office | The Town of York Historical Society

Resources:

COVID-19 Updates from Toronto Public Health

COVID-19 Updates from Canada Post

Current Hours:

Monday – Friday: 9:00am – 5:30pm
Saturday: 10:00am – 4:00pm
Sunday: 12:00pm – 4:00pm

Toronto's First Post Office

260 Adelaide Street East
Toronto, ON M5A 1N1

M–F: 9:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Sat: 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Sun: 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Phone: (416) 865-1833
Email: info@tos1stpo.com

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