RURAL WOMEN NEW ZEALAND SAYS WE NEED CHEQUES
Rural Women New Zealand (RWNZ) ran a survey seeking members’ views on the discontinuation of accepting cheques in 2021, with responses overwhelmingly opposing the withdrawal of cheques.
“The response was the highest we’ve ever had for a survey in three years. So, it’s clearly an issue for rural communities.” says RWNZ Policy Manager, Angela McLeod.
According to the survey, the main use of cheques was paying monthly bills, purchasing farm supplies, and paying tax. Over 70% of respondents voiced concern over the phasing out of cheques. 42.5 percent of respondents said they still wrote out cheques for purchases and expenses. Of those who did use cheques, 75.2 percent said they posted them to make their payments.
“The goal is not to create a permanent stay of cheques, however, to create a viable option for those who do not yet have the connectivity options,” says RWNZ Board Member and Social Issues Portfolio Convenor, Sharron Davie-Martin.
“Rural communities don’t have the technology or access to consistent technology to carry out their banking transactions – they have to use cheques.
“Cheques will get rid of themselves eventually, however, we want places to be able to accept cheques until technology is at a point where farming and rural communities can safely use the internet for their banking transactions.
“Banks are saying that they’ll help their customers learn how to use online banking, however, if you don’t have a good internet connection then that’s not going to work.”
“All we want is for banks & other institutions to just keep accepting cheques until technology is at a point where every rural household has good, reliable internet – that’s it,” says Davie-Martin.
For more information, or to request an interview with Sharron, please contact Angela McLeod on angela.mcleod@ruralwomennz.