LETTERS TO THE EDITOR | Closure of Commonwealth Bank Fairfield Heights branch distresses customers

COMMONWEALTH: Fairfield Heights branch at 10.30am, one day last week. Picture: Daryl King
COMMONWEALTH: Fairfield Heights branch at 10.30am, one day last week. Picture: Daryl King

Re the closure of the Commonwealth Bank at Fairfield Heights. My parents got a letter stating "for their convenience they can now go to Cabramatta, Fairfield or Wetherill Park", all further away, with terrible parking.

Now they walk to the Fairfield Heights branch. How can it be more convenient to travel further? My father is disabled, and not the only disabled customer at the branch. Staff told me one of their customers, in a wheelchair, was in tears over this.

Fairfield Heights population is growing. Staff tell me they don't know where they're going.

It's really disgusting how the bank puts profits before the community and their own staff. I've been a customer of the branch since I was a child, about 35 years. My parents for longer. Where's the goodwill to customers? Last night we got a call from a representative of the CBA, after my mother tried to call the branch earlier in the day. The person said data shows people are already using these other branches.

When pressed for this data, she said she couldn't share it with me. Attached is a photo [see online] at 10.30am of the Fairfield Heights branch. It's rather busy, contrary to what the bank says.

DARYL KING, Fairfield Heights

. . . go to Fairfield, Wetherill Park, Westfield Liverpool or Cabramatta.

Spokeswoman, Commonwealth Bank

EDITOR RESPONDS: We sent this letter to the bank and asked: Why is the branch closing? How many staff are there? Will they be offered work elsewhere? How many customers use the branch? How many have complained to you about the closure?

BANK RESPONDS: I can't discuss specific matters regarding staff. Generally, if a Commonwealth Bank branch closes, we will work to redeploy staff. Our customers have more banking options available than ever before and are increasingly choosing to bank via our mobile, online and phone services. We regularly review our branch locations to help us make informed decisions on new branches, upgrading existing branches and closing branches not being used as much. Closing is never an easy decision. We only do so after carefully considering customer demand and alternative services. We have branches at Fairfield, Wetherill Park, Westfield Shoppingtown Liverpool and Cabramatta, which half our Fairfield Heights customers already use. Our Fairfield branch is also being refurbished. We understand some customers may be concerned, so want to assure them that during the six-week transition our staff are on hand to help. Australia Post down the road is available for personal and business banking.

Spokeswoman, CBA