asked the Minister for Posts and Telegraphs if it is a fact that a man who had no previous service in the Postal Service has been appointed to a vacancy in the Foulksmills (County Wexford) Post Office in preference to Patrick Donovan, a candidate for the appointment, who has been doing temporary relief work at the Foulksmills Post Office for three months in each of the past five years and who previous to 1924 had 16 or 17 years' service as auxiliary postman and subsequently as allowance deliverer at the neighbouring post office in Taghmon; and if, in view of the fact that by the reduction from auxiliary postman to allowance deliverer Patrick Donovan has suffered a loss of fourteen shillings a week and benefit of national health and unemployment insurance, and that his long service in the postal service is unblemished, and that he has a wife and family of seven young children to support, the Minister will review the appointment to Foulksmills Post Office staff and appoint Patrick Donovan to the post or give him similar employment in the postal service.
Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - County Wexford Postal Appointment.
Part-time postmen are recruited from local sources and in this case the appointed candidate was considered to be the most suitable of the local applicants. Mr. Donovan is attached to a neighbouring office and resides at an inconvenient distance from the office at which the vacancy occurred. There is no similar position at present available to which Mr. Donovan could be appointed.
Is it not a fact that Donovan gave satisfactory service at the office where the vacancy is; that he did the work for some months before the death of the late occupant and for four months afterwards?
That is a fact. The practice in these appointments is that a man living in the area served by the auxiliary postman is appointed, and this man lives five miles away, I understand, at a place called Taghmon.
So that not only was this work done for many months recently at Foulksmills by Donovan, but he is a man who had 20 years' service in the post office and the person now appointed has no post office service. Does not the Minister consider that a very serious injustice has been done in a case like that where a man has given this service; where there has been no complaint as to the way in which he did his duty up to the present; and when he is a man with a wife and family of seven children?
The position is, as I understand it, that his area is five miles away and he has reverted to the position in which he had been before; because it is considered that local people are the best suited to these particular jobs. The actual amount of the wages of the man who has got it is only 14/10 per week and Donovan has 10/- per week, so that there is not very much difference, considering he would have to come five miles.