Active Retirement Ireland, the country’s largest older people’s organisation has reacted with “disappointment” to reports that the cost of a national stamp is to rise from 72c to €1 and that some post offices will have to close as part of cost-savings measures. Peter Kavanagh, Head of Communications and Public Affairs for the organisation, said today, “An Post provides a valuable public service, and if the government insists this service be provided on a purely profit-and-loss basis, then more post offices will close and the price of postage will become unsustainable.”
“As a community-based organisation working with a cohort of people who rely a great deal on the postal service, we are disappointed that we have just had our postage costs increased by 20%. In a country where many older people live in isolated areas and do not have access to broadband, even in 2017, the postal service is key and must be preserved for the good of rural communities.”
Minister for Communications Denis Naughten said yesterday that he wanted to protect the An Post brand, which he said had huge potential. He also said he wanted to protect the five-day delivery service and the mail service across the country.
Kavanagh added, “The minister has been aware of this situation for some time now. If the government forces An Post the route Bus Éireann has taken, ignoring the vital public service it provides in favour of maximising profit, older people in rural communities will bear the burden yet again.”