LETTER – 20 January 2011 – I was told last Friday (14 January) that the Glebe Post Office will close as “planned” on 4 February and that stuff was already being moved out.

The senior management of Australia Post don’t care about the needs of Glebe or its unusually large number of elderly pensioner residents.

They also don’t give a stuff about the expensive “Future Ready” strategy they launched last year, which is sprinkled with words like “transparency” “community participation” “collaboration” “accountability” –   all rubbish as evidenced by their current behaviour.

The first “Notice of Closure” appeared in the window of the post office in the first week of January – the middle of the Christmas Holidays.

It said that there had been a “significant decline in customer numbers” even though no-one who uses the place had noticed any lessening of queue lengths.  It said “you can go to Annandale” – how many pensioners did they send on a walk to test this absurd proposition – how many came back?  Or you can go to Ultimo – how many bus changes does that take, could they advise?

Or you can go and join the ever lengthening queues at Broadway and enrich the franchisee and shopping centre operator further.

This is a classic corporate dirty trick: decide without consultation, make an announcement at the last possible moment, preferably when everyone is away, then keep your heads down and pay some spinning flak to make tut-tut noises as the punters think they are doing something via petitions, public meetings, letters to MPs or whatever.

Then when “normal life” resumes in February, there is no Glebe Post Office.  Oh dear, sorry about that, but it’s too late now.

The politicians will wring their hands but not do anything meaningful.  Nobody will tell the Post Office that there will be painful board/management/job consequences for willfully ignoring their own published code of conduct.  The minister will not legislate for obligatory public enquiries into proposed post office closures, so that the reasons given and other factors can be aired and tested in public.  In short, whatever “they” say, they don’t care either.

I really hope that I will be proved wrong, but realistically all we can look forward to is fibre running past our house which most don’t need/won’t use, and the cost of which would keep the Glebe Post Office afloat for another millennium or two.  It’s a shame and a disgrace.

Adrian Fletcher, Glebe, NSW

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