Fianna Fáil Finance spokesperson Michael McGrath has called for Bank of Ireland to urgently clarify how older people and those with special needs will be impacted by plans to restrict cash transactions in its branches.
Deputy McGrath commented: “Bank of Ireland is clearly in a panic following the public backlash against its announcement yesterday that over-the-counter cash withdrawals will be restricted to a minimum of €700 and cash lodgements to a minimum of €3,000.
“I am deeply suspicious about Bank of Ireland’s statement that “vulnerable customers, together with those elderly customers who are not comfortable using self-service channels or other technology solutions, will be assisted by branch staff to use the available in-branch services.
“This sounds to me like Bank of Ireland intends to have staff on the floor of its branches directing all customers towards in branch ATMs and so-called “quick lodge” machines. This is not the same as allowing customers to be able to conduct their business at a counter, in the manner in which they are familiar with.
“There is every likelihood that Bank of Ireland would withdraw this facility of assisting customers with ATM and quick lodge transactions once the initial furore has died down.
“It is imperative now that Bank of Ireland clarify exactly what they are planning. Nothing less than a commitment to provide a full in branch banking service for older and vulnerable customers will be acceptable to groups who have raised very legitimate concerns about this issue,” concluded Deputy McGrath.