I turned up at a Post Office on the East Bank on Monday morning (May 8), at about 07:00h, to encash an NIS voucher. As I entered the building through an open door, a member of staff said to me in a tone of voice that bordered arrogance, “We en open yet!”
I said to her, “Would it be okay for me to sit on your bench here and wait?”
To this moment as you read this, she did not give me a response. So I sat down on the bench to wait, with my voucher and identification card in my hand visible for all to see at the ready.
As I sat there, four other persons joined me as the clock ticked. At 7:30h, a woman went to the counter and enquired, “Morning. Can you say how much longer we have to wait?” The clerk replied, “I doan know.” (More arrogance).
The woman asked, “Why?” Another clerk shouted, “ We ain’t gat no money!”
All this time, the Post Mistress is sitting there.
Now, a few thoughts crossed in my mind:
why are GPOC staff not trained in the methods of communication?
why couldn’t someone say to us from the beginning that cash was not available, and perhaps would be available later or not at all; so that we, who were waiting, could have made a decision to wait or leave?
It’s distressing, to say the least, that elderly people are made to sit/stand in a line and wait for attention that no public servant seems willing to give, even during official working hours; while those public servants merrily chatter.
If the Post Mistress is going to sit idly while all of this happen, then there is no hope for a change occurring in the near future.
Having spent most of my working years in the private sector, and mostly as a frontline employee, such an experience really disgusts and deflates me, as well as leaves me feeling a profound sense of neglect by those paid to serve the elderly public.