Latest Laois News: Local TD calls for protection of remaining Laois Post Offices

Latest Laois News: Local TD calls for protection of remaining Laois Post Offices

Laois & Offaly’s remaining Post Offices need to be protected- Stanley

Local Sinn Féin TD Brian Stanley has welcomed news the Government has accepted Sinn Féin amendments to a Seanad motion on the future of An Post.

The Sinn Féin amendments called on the government to introduce a Public Service Obligation (PSO) to secure the future of our post office network and prevent further post office closures.

“The postal service has been blighted by closures and hobbled by cutbacks. We need urgent action and significant investment from the government if we don’t want further closures.

Sinn Féin fully supports the call of the Irish Postmasters’ Union for a PSO and we have been advocating for this for over a decade.

Notably, Fianna Fáil also supported a PSO when in opposition and spoke in favour of it during a Dáil debate on a Sinn Féin motion in 2018.

However, support for a PSO was conspicuously absent from the Seanad motion brought by Fianna Fáil recently. It would have been completely hypocritical to call for a PSO and then drop support for it once in government.

People who rely on their post offices were watching intently to see if they did what they promised and fortunately, Fianna Fáil supported the Sinn Féin amendments.’’

Since 2018, more than 200 post offices have closed nationwide. In Laois/Offaly these closures included Ballinakill, Ballybrittas, Geashill, Moneygall, Mountlucas, Pollagh, and Walsh Island. The remaining Post Offices in the Constituency need to be protected.

photo of member of Irish Parliament Brian Stanley addressing parliament
Laois-Offaly TD Brian Stanley calls for protection of remaining Post Offices in Laois.

Without support of the PSO, the State faces significant levels of unrestrained closures according to a report by Grant Thornton commissioned by the Irish Postmasters’ Union.

Simply calling on the government is not enough. Now we need to follow this commitment up with action. Without urgent action we’ll see more closures.

If the Government believes that An Post has untapped potential to do more across many areas of the public, business and community life in Ireland, then Post Offices need to be utilised to provide a wider range of services.’’