28 April, 2023

Australia Post changes detrimental to rural Australians

Somerset Regional Council has slammed a prospective change by Australia Post to limit its letter delivery service in the future.

Australia Post changes detrimental to rural Australians - feature photo

The proposed change published by Australia Post in its discussion paper, “Postal Services Modernisation” would negatively impact residents living in rural areas including the South-East Queensland local government authority.

Somerset Mayor Graeme Lehmann said the discussion paper stated Australia Post is losing “significant amounts of money” with its letter service and was of the mind to limit the service into the future.

“Their report has a focus on business rather than the customer which is disappointing,” Cr Lehmann said. 

“There is no consideration for the need to continue its letter service in some parts of Australia as opposed to others or in areas where mobile and internet coverage is poor.

“We are a rural region, with an ageing population, where many of our residents rely on getting their information by receiving a letter in the mail.”

Councillor Sean Choat shared the sentiment of Cr Lehmann and said there was little consideration given to rural communities in the Australia Post review.

“Their report also states that Government and businesses are the primary users of the letter service and in many cases, it’s a legislative requirement for local governments to send certain notices by mail,” Cr Choat said.

“For Australia Post to significantly change or limit its letter delivery service will have a major impact on our region and many other local governments unless the legislative framework is amended simultaneously to enable the digital delivery of legal notices.

“Even so, changes in legislation will still not address residents who live in areas where mobile and internet coverage is poor.

“Local governments also use the postal service to inform residents of events and activities which benefit them.

“Our residents deserve better service, not less services.”

Somerset Regional Council will make a submission to Australia Post outlining its concerns.

Council has also reached out to the Local Government Association Queensland (LGAQ) alerting them to their submission and requesting they advocate on behalf of all Local Governments and rural residents.

LGAQ has advised of its intention to elevate the matter to the Australian Local Government Association.


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