Colreavy welcomes the launch of report on the post office network
Deputy Michael Colreavy, Sinn Féin spokesperson on communications, energy and natural resources, has welcomed the launch of the report “Promoting a sustainable future for the post office network” by the Joint Committee on Transport and Communications.
Speaking at the launch today in Leinster House Deputy Colreavy said:
“Communities have suffered from the loss of many services: closure of schools, garda stations and local businesses has resulted in a reduction in infrastructure and identity for communities.
“The post office network relies heavily on the Social Welfare contract. It should be an imperative that the contract is retained by post offices. However, it should also aim to attract business from other sources. This report outlines a number of options for post offices such as assuming responsibility for the payment of motor tax renewals, business rates, rents and other government payment services.
“The report also recommends that An Post clarify and make public the criteria they use to establish the viability of post offices, to allow the public a role in determining the future of their post office. The report also recommends that an amber light warning system be established where communities could be notified whether their local post office was in danger of closing and allow the community to respond.
“While the number of letters that are passing through post offices has fallen, a trend that is replicated throughout Europe, there has been an increasing number of parcels being handled by post offices. This change has been brought about by the increase in online shopping and the post office network should adapt to these changing conditions.
“With the loss of so many services in rural areas, it is essential that the post office network is retained to provide and cater for communities across the country.” ENDS