Donegal Senator Brian Ó Domhnaill has welcomed confirmation from An Post that its CEO Donal Connell will appear before the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Communications, Natural Resources and Agriculture next week to discuss the closure of rural post offices.
Senator Ó Domhnaill was among the members of the Committee who requested that Mr Connell be invited to answer questions about the policy of closing small post offices in rural communities across Ireland.
“I am delighted that Mr Connell has accepted our invitation to answer questions about the future of a number of small post offices in communities across the country,” said Senator Ó Domhnaill.
“It is devastating for any community, particularly more isolated rural communities, to lose their local post office. The post office is a key amenity for small towns and villages accross Ireland and it is often treated as a focal point or meeting places in many communities.
“There are genuine concerns about the future of a number of small post offices in the North West region. The post offices in Laghey and Meenlaragh were closed over the past number of months very little advance notice and no consultation locally. The sudden loss of such an important local service has been upsetting for many people locally.
“I want to ask Mr Connell about An Post’s policy in relation post office closures. I want to question him about how this policy is being executed. It is crucial that adequate consultation takes place before any closures are considered and if a post office is to close, the community must be given proper notice before that happens.
“It is important that An Post management knows that this is not just about the services a post office provides, it is about the preservation of small rural communities. At time when many communities are facing cuts to their local schools, their local garda stations and their local health services, the loss of their post office is another blow they simply cannot afford.”