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Future of postal services: Rural delivery a lifeline



PRESS RELEASE issued by the New Zealand Rural General Practice Network, February 12, 2013


Future of postal services: Rural delivery a lifeline says New Zealand Rural General Practice Network

The New Zealand Rural General Practice Network agrees with Rural Women New Zealand when it says the special role of the rural delivery service needs to be acknowledged and preserved as far as possible.

The Rural Women NZ Postman pat-on-the-back Awards in 2012 revealed the extent of the social and practical services provided by rural delivery contractors who often deliver groceries, medicines, supplies or spare parts, all of which help farmers, small businesses and families overcome the obstacles of living long distances from town.

The award entries also revealed the very important social role played by rural posties.

For some living in remote areas, the rural delivery contractor is the only contact with the outside world for days at a time. Several mentioned how important this is in combating loneliness, which can lead to depression, another very real problem for rural.

While the New Zealand Rural General Practice Network (the Network) appreciates that access to digital communications is increasing for rural people as broadband is slowly being rolled out, but there is nothing that replaces a personal interaction.

“The contractor usually knows the people on their route, and if they see a delivery has not been collected they can alert other social services if needs be.”

The Network will be further consulting with its members on the NZ Post proposals and making a formal submission.

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