Post office idea of offering banking services rings hollow

07/24/2014 2:01 PM

07/24/2014 2:01 PM

In the last five years the U.S. Postal Service has closed one post office on Independence Avenue in the Northeast area of Kansas City and severely reduced the hours of a second branch at St. John and Hardesty avenues.

That kind of reduction in service has been taking place all over the city and throughout the country. How does it make any sense now that the Postal Service wants to offer banking services to underserved urban or rural areas?

Just as businesses, jobs, banks, people, schools and even stoplights have pulled out of the urban core of Kansas City, so have post offices. It is a nice idea for post offices to offer check cashing, small loans, prepaid cards and other financial services to people, but they first have to be going full-swing in the long abandoned parts of town.

The North-East and Lucile Bluford branch libraries in Kansas City offer more postal services than the post offices in the urban core. If the closed post offices reopen and stay open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., then maybe their having banking services for the black and Latino communities would be worthwhile.

As it is now, that Postal Service idea was nothing but a lot of hot air.

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