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Jan 22, 2014

Australia Post scheme delivering a small-town headache

Crikey readers talk Australia Post and what should be done about asylum seekers arriving by boat.

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Return Australia Post’s scheme to sender

Kate Olivieri writes: Re. “Going postal” (yesterday). Regarding three-day a week delivery: this would be a disaster for regional areas — it already takes mail from my town (Lismore) three to five days to get to/come from (as an example) Canberra or up to four weeks coming from overseas. I already have a PO box because I have had to move around a lot, but again I already often have to wait to get mail — I pay extra to be notified when I have mail, and sometimes I can’t get there for another two days.

So some simple maths, assuming mail was delivered Monday, Wednesday and Friday (you can bet it would be fewer days in smaller post offices — Lismore has about 36,000 people and the post offices would service around 46,000):

Posted Monday the 1st in Canberra, arrives Thursday the 4th in Lismore, can’t get to the post office until Friday 5th or Monday 8th.

Will become:

Posted Monday 1st in Canberra, arrives Monday the 8th in Lismore, can’t get to the post office until Wednesday the 10th or Friday the 12th.

This means that four-day delivery/one-week pickup will become eight-day delivery and nearly two weeks to pick up. Regional and rural areas continue to be shafted by business.

John Richardson writes: If Chokyi Nyingpo thinks it would be tough to live with Australia Post’s proposed new customer-focused program, involving either paying for mail deliveries or picking them up at the local post office, he should recognise that he’s dead lucky compared to those in many other communities.

We have never had any kind of delivery service from Australia Post and have to travel to the local garage a couple of kilometres away to pick up our mail. Still, a whole lot better than having to drive 20 kilometres to the nearest post office. Count your blessings, Chokyi!

A real way to stop the boats

Colin Smith writes: Re. “Kingsbury: Australia’s big asylum seeker policy hole” (Monday). First Dog has expressed my worst fears about where our asylum seeker policy is headed, and Damien Kingsbury has outlined a humane, legal and practical alternative.

The Kingsbury regional solution is essentially the same as the one Malcolm Fraser implemented years ago, and as the Greens now advocate.

‘Genuine’ refugees?

Tamas Calderwood writes: Re:  “Why most of us want the boats to stop” (yesterday).  Your editorial attributes the majority opinion on boats to a “misinformation campaign”. However, perhaps Crikey isn’t as clued up as the public on this issue. Your credulous acceptance that being “stamped [as a] refugee” automatically makes you a genuine refugee is obviously rejected by a majority of Australians. The questions is, why? My guess: when 80% of these “refugees” destroy their documents to conceal their identities after paying $5000-$10,000 to people smugglers for an illegal passage to Australia, they lose the benefit of the doubt.

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