‘Dismal’ An Post consultation process

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Following a well-attended meeting on the subject of Cappataggle Post Office on Monday night, East Galway TD Paul Connaughton has said that the public’s frustration with An Post’s so-called ‘consultation’ process is growing.
‘A proper consultation process involves information passing between two parties, but local communities trying to engage with An Post in advance of proposed office closures are coming up against a wall of silence from the postal company.
‘Communities should be told what level of business constitutes a viable post office, and where their local post office measures on the scale, but none of this information is available and local communities are operating in the dark when it comes to trying to secure the future of their local facility.
‘I raised this issue with Minister Alex White last week when I discussed the issue of An Post office closures and in particular the dismal level of consultation that is afforded to local communities. Much greater clarity is needed and much more engagement in terms of additional facilities that can be put into local post offices.
‘In coming weeks I will be urging government to publish a plan as to what other services can be put into the post office network as I believe that this is the best way to secure a viable future for the local post office network.
‘I also intend to work with Minister Noonan to explore the establishment of strategic partnerships between An Post and local Credit Unions, as greater co-operation would lead to a more sustainable future for rural post offices.
‘In the last year we have seen communities in Barnadearg and Cappataggle struggle to retain postal services in their local communities. An Post and government must work with these local communities to secure these services in rural Ireland and I believe that increased service offering through partnerships with movements such as the Credit Union will help secure the future of rural post offices.’