AUSTRALIA Post has accused the Communications Workers Union of scaremongering over potential job cuts.
CWU Victorian secretary Joan Doyle said she was concerned a possible move of local mail sorting to Dandenong could lead to cuts at the Bendigo sorting centre and delivery delays.
But an Australia Post spokeswoman said the union was misleading staff and the general public.
“Rather than engage in constructive discussions about the future of Australia Post, Victorian union representatives have yet again chosen to make misleading statements to scaremonger both the community and the Australia Post workforce,” she said.
The spokeswoman said changes would create “greater efficiencies” but would not affect delivery standards.
But Ms Doyle said the company planned to install new sorting machines in Dandenong to process Bendigo mail with little doubt local services would suffer.
(they) have yet again chosen to make misleading statements
She said mail sorting in five regional areas – Bendigo, Seymour, Geelong, Ballarat and Gippsland – would move to Melbourne and result in job losses.
“There are a lot of people keen to keep the level of services that are there now,” Ms Doyle said.
“They don’t want the clock wound back decades.
“People have been able to get same-day services since 1977 and they basically want to tear that up.”
Australia Post had said the company was "committed to meeting the Australian community’s delivery needs".
"(That) includes our legislated service standard to deliver 94 per cent of domestic letters on time," the spokeswoman said.
But Ms Doyle said it would not be possible to transport mail to Dandenong and sort it for same-day delivery.
Bendigo Business Council executive officer Patrick Falconer said companies that relied on same-day deliveries may need to seek alternative arrangements like couriers.
Bendigo Community Telco manager Jim Nielsen said he was concerned by the impact mail delays could have on local companies.
“For any business, timeliness is of the essence,” he said.
“It’s going to take longer, there’s no doubting that.
“Often we work with our suppliers in Melbourne and Sydney and they send us equipment and unnecessary delays will be reflected in increased times.
"It will have an effect on our customers.”
The local sorting facility employs about 40 people.