Wodonga post staff wary of shift to Lavington

Australia Post plans to transfer Wodonga mail hub staff to its Lavington centre. Picture: DYLAN ROBINSON
Australia Post plans to transfer Wodonga mail hub staff to its Lavington centre. Picture: DYLAN ROBINSON

ALL mail in Albury-Wodonga will be sorted at Lavington under an Australia Post plan to move nearly 40 postal workers from Wodonga to Albury.

The proposal could result in delayed deliveries to parts of Wodonga, a union representative said yesterday.

The transfer, expected to be introduced in October, raises questions about the future of Wodonga’s High Street post office that opened in 1985.

Rationalisation is also expected to affect towns along the Murray River.

Communication Workers Union Victorian secretary Joan Doyle said the union and employees were fighting to stop any changes.

“There are 23 corporate postal workers and 16 contract workers who will have to travel backwards and forwards and that will cost more than paying for rent in Wodonga,” she said.

Ms Doyle said she was also concerned about workers having to cross the Lincoln Causeway.

“In winter, it gets very foggy and often they do 12-hour days where they would be coming back in the dark,” she said.

“We don’t think it’s safe.”

An Australia Post spokeswoman said it had opened talks with staff and the union about moving employees from Wodonga’s Hovell Street centre to Lavington.

“As the lease on the Wodonga facility is about to expire and the Lavington facility is near by, the proposal is an opportunity for Australia Post to optimise its delivery network,” she said.

“There will be no forced redundancies as a result of this proposal.”

She said the decision was not related to the Wodonga Council’s plan to close Hovell Street.

“The relocation is a good option for Australia Post as we own the Lavington site. It is larger and therefore has capacity for expansion,” she said.

“We are unaware of the council’s plan to close Hovell Street.”

Ms Doyle said the change would be make it difficult for employees.

“It adds to their work hours and personal costs and all to save Australia Post on a bit of their rental cost,” she said.

“They would also be working in different states which means different road rules and public holidays.”

Another meeting will be held this month.