Westpac Benalla to close

By Simon Ruppert

Westpac Benalla is one of 22 branches around Australia set to close down.

Days after the banks received a slap on the wrist from the Banking Royal Commission, Westpac is abandoning parts of its branch network in a move which will severely inconvenience thousands of customers and leave staff wondering if they will soon be unemployed.

Westpac has notified the union it plans to close branches in: 

(NSW) Flemington Markets; Pennant Hills; 591 George St, Sydney; Brookvale; Sutherland; 52 Martin Place, Sydney; The Junction; Warrawong and Balgowlah. 

(Qld) Coorparoo; Broadbeach; Beaudesert.

(Vic) Kangaroo Flat; Rosanna; Lalor; Bulleen; Corio; Altona Gate; Balaclava; and Benalla.

(SA) Hallett Cove.

(WA) Osborne Park South

“Hard on the heels of the release of the Banking Royal Commission report, these branch closures send a clear message to Westpac’s customers and staff: that Westpac cares more about profits than people,” said Finance Sector Union National Secretary Julia Angrisano.

“Now should be the time that banks turn their attention to rebuilding public trust but closing branches is a kick in the guts for the community,” she said.

“We know how hard the loss of a branch hits local residents, particularly the elderly and Westpac has left them in the lurch. These closures will also impact on local businesses. And we know in some parts of Australia, the 76 bank workers affected by these closures could find it difficult to get another job.”

Ms Angrisano said the FSU would work with the bank and the union’s members to maximise the numbers of staff redeployed to other jobs within Westpac.