The Irish Natura & Hill Farmers Association (INHFA) is demanding that the Government commits to ensuring the survival of our Post Office network. INHFA spokesperson Brendan O’Malley has outlined how new contracts proposed by management of An Post will if implemented see a significant number of post offices closed in the coming years. These closures he stated “will predominantly be in rural Ireland which has already seen a major reduction in services through the closure of banks and Garda stations.”
The new contracts that An Post are offering Postmasters will stated O’Malley stagnate their income, remove annual leave, penalise for targets not reached and provide An Post with the opportunity to change terms without consultation.” These proposals he continued “would be unacceptable in any workplace as they would be a breach industrial relations law and should not feature in any negotiations between An Post and the Postmasters.”
The INHFA are now seeking Government intervention to help resolve the current impasse and protect our Post Office network. This intervention should put a five year moratorium on the closure of any post offices while protecting the contracts that are there. “A budget to help deliver this may be needed, but if we can spend up to €70 billion on our failed banks then we can surely find the €4million or so needed to maintain our Rural Post Office” added O’Malley.
A five year moratorium would concluded O’Malley “provide us with the space to plan a more certain future for all our post offices.”