Businesses stick up for postie
BUSINESSES in Fremantle’s CBD are angry over the possible loss of their regular postman who’s resisting plans to force him onto an electric tricyle to deliver the mail.
Record Finder owner Mark Lahogue says along with other local businesses, he enjoys the “old feel” of their mail being delivered by a postie who walks his beat. He believes Australia Postis prioritising efficiency and speed over letting a professional do their job.
“The head office in Melbourne might think that a motorbike is quicker but it’s not really about that, this guy is a professional doing what he does best,” Mr Lahogue said.
Businesses in the area were used to the cart full of mail being pushed down the street, the mail being delivered and the postman stopping to have a quick chat every morning.
“We feel the postie is a part of the community. Now they want to do away with that,” Mr Lahogue said.
“To me it doesn’t fit the culture of Fremantle.”
Mr Lahogue says an electric tricycle would also be difficult to negotiate along High Street’s busy footpaths, so he can understand why the postie is resisting the change.
Communications Workers Trade Union branch secretary Barry Mcvee is in an ongoing “fierce debate” with Australia Post regarding the livelihoods of two of its longest serving postmen in Fremantle.
The Post Office in Fremantle was damaged by a storm in August 2022 causing the relocation of many posties to the head office in Palmyra.
“They have done that run for many years and obviously built up a loyal following with businesses in Fremantle,” Mr Mcvee said.
“Australia Post can be a unique beast to deal with.”
Mr Mcvee said Australia Post were putting “every obstacle in the way that they possibly can” to stop the two postmen from doing the rounds they’ve done for more than 12 years.
“The two of them are doing everything they possibly can to show that they can continue to do their runs, they want to do their runs, the businesses want them down there,” Mr Mcvee said.
Australia Post believes the electronic tricycles are a far more effective way to deliver mail, saying they were used successfully between May 2020 and May 2022. “Those vehicles are important in our fleet in terms of the significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions,” a spokesperson for Australia Post said.
They said they are still working with the posties on the future of the round once the Fremantle Post Office is rebuilt, and says there’ll be a “mix of pushbike, electric vehicle, van and walk delivery for the CBD.
“It’[s just a transitional period at the moment,” they said, noting there’d been no complaints about the reintroduction of the electric trikes in the last couple of weeks.
by JAMES THOMAS