Just in case everyone else is close to running out of steam like me, this reminded me that we can do one more week with cheer. I just hope the Boxing day sales are not really bigger than Christmas or I'm done. I need at least a week's break just to look at some empty parcel shelves for a change.
T'was a week before Christmas, And all through the town,
People wore masks, That covered their frown.
The frown had begun Way back in the Spring,
When a global pandemic Changed everything.
They called it corona, But unlike the beer,
Community Licensed Post Offices are all across Australia, serving over 80% of the Australia Post retail footprint. We are the locals, working in and serving our local communities. We are not paid public servants. We purchase the license which grants the Licensee the right to operate our community Post Office.
Australia Post pays us fees and commissions as per our License Agreement, with the sole exception of a $6.60 (ex GST) daily representation fee, our income is based only on the level of business transacted in our community Post Office, by our customers. As such, we are very much dependent on a successful and very well managed Australia Post. Hence our full support of Christine Holgate as the CEO of Australia Post. We must have a successful Australia Post, for now, and for Australia's future. We need to speak up now. Christine has not resigned, she offered her resignation - effective immediately, however her terms were not accepted by the Board, so she is on standby. She needs to go back to work.
Please contact your Federal member and voice your concerns at the loss of Christine Holgate and the total disregard for the success of Australia Post and our shared future for the Postal Service of Australia. We have been previously informed that the Goverment of the day believes their community service obligations is fulfilled by the delivery of letters to 94% of delivery points, and providing a postal foot print of 4,000. However the government does not see it is any part of their obligation for those POs to be profitable, and they do not accept they have any obligation to deliver parcels to households or businesses. So effectively we are the football in this political football game, where each side tries to kick the obligations over to the other side, time after time after time. Christine Holgate accepted the position of CEO, and also accepted that Australia Post must be successful, and must share that success all through the business. Which is why she is our breath of fresh air, and invaluable for community Licensed Post Offices. She believes we should thrive, and after 30 years of denial of that from Governments and Australia Post executives and Boards, she is a keeper!
LPOG Executive members met with Barnaby Joyce today and put forward our concerns in regard to recent events that saw the PM put the Community Licensed Post Office network back 10 years. For decades the financial outcomes for Licensees have not been on the agenda for either Australia Post, or the Government of the day.
From 27 October people from all over Australia started sending $5 to the Prime Minister to cover the cost of the watches. LPOG asked senders to use a registered envelope so the delivery could be tracked.
Most of the tracking shows the letters have arrived at various mail facilities in Canberra, but very few of them have been delivered according to the tracking.
Recently a sender lodged an enquiry about his letter, and today received an apology from Australia Post. Seems his letter has been deemed lost in the mail!
As it is a bank note, it is not covered for contents compensation, however a refund on the postage is offered on proof of purchase.
UNBELIEVABLE! Lodge an enquiry if yours has not been delivered. You paid for proof of delivery, it must be provided!
It is with great sadness; that today I have offered the Chair and the Board my resignation as Chief Executive of Australia Post with immediate effect. Attached is a copy of my Media Statement.
As Christmas approaches it is critically important that the business is absolutely focussed on supporting our customers and communities. We have prepared significantly for this Peak, but we still face significant challenges, keeping our people safe, managing the biggest Christmas ever and planning in the face of unpredictable seasonal weather. I firmly believe the ‘ship’ needs a strong captain at the helm to help navigate the business through this. The current issue I am managing is a significant distraction and I do not believe it is good for either Australia Post or my own personal wellbeing. Consequently, I have made the very difficult decision to resign, hoping the organisation can get fully focussed on serving our customers.
I have found the last ten days very disappointing and I believe continuing in a holding pattern puts my own health at significant risk, whilst continuing to distract the organisation and its leadership.
I cannot begin to write how important your support to me has been through-out this time. When Angela first called me and challenged me to step up and continue, I was at a low point. Your belief and support gave me the strength to continue. As the days have continued, I am humbled with the literally hundreds if not thousands of letters of support, from customers, employees and many members of the public. However, ten days in, I fear that continuing brings distraction to Australia Post’s leadership, our customers and more damage to my own wellbeing and consequently early this morning I made the very difficult decision to resign. In recognition of my thanks to you, I have offered, when I am able to do so, support you and your Board, in developing your strategies and ensuring your ongoing viability. I have even offered to come and volunteer with you ahead of Christmas!
I deeply regret, that a gift I chose two years ago, to recognise the outstanding work of 4 employees, has caused so much debate and distraction and I appreciate in today’s eyes the optics of these gifts, do not pass the “pub test”. I still believe firmly that the people who achieved the Bank@Post outcome for Australia Post deserved recognition. The gifts were approved by the previous Chair, they were correctly accounted for, openly celebrated and I personally did not benefit at all from them. I would never intentionally ever do anything to damage the Australia Post brand and if my comments have offended any of you, I sincerely apologise.
There is never a good time to leave a job and an organisation you love. But loving Australia Post as I do, I know now is the right time to do this, as this gives the organisation you the best opportunity to get focussed ahead of a massive Christmas.
I am proud that I leave Australia Post growing again with a strong viable future ahead. And if I look back at my tenure, a true highlight has been for me, working with you all. I have always deeply respected the significant personal investments you have made to carry our brand and I wish you every success in the future.
We are asking Licensees, and staff and customers who are interested in showing support, to pop a $5 note into a registered envelope, just to keep an eye on it, and send it off to the PM to help cover the cost of the richly rewarded watches.
Canberra ACT 2602
There has been calls from Licensees to close our LPOs for a day of mourning at the possible loss of the CEO Christine Holgate.
While LPOG is fully supportive of action to raise our voice, we have long resisted the call for strike, or closing our doors, throughout our years of lobbying for improved payments because it will cost us to close, and it is our customers who are ultimately impacted.
This situation is quite different from a protracted payment dispute, having far more urgency to the need for action, but ultimately, it will have the same impact on our customers and our communities if we choose to close our doors in protest.
Our EGM Nicole Sheffield has assured us that the viability of our businesses will continue to be considered in management decisions going forward, with or without Christine Holgate. Nicole Sheffield has been an outstanding success for the retail side of the business and she knows how important our survival is to us. So we have to trust that she will have our backs in this. She has been a power house for us in our payments, and business over all.
We have also received an email from Christine who very much appreciates our support, and said
Thank you enormously for your support, but Please Stay Open
So when the 2 people who have made such a difference to our outcomes since they have been in the job, ask us to stay open in support of the customers and our Brand it seems we should listen to that for the time being.
We can hope good judgement prevails, and this nonsense is over.
We will revisit action if that does not happen.