Residents of Lime Hall in St Ann said they have been abandoned by the relevant authorities who have failed to heed their pleas for the return of a post office and a cemetery to serve the community.
The residents say they have been without a post office for more than a year now, after the owners of the property on which it was located ended the lease.
Added to that the Lime Hall cemetery, which served the community for years, was ordered closed by the St Ann Parish Council after it reached its capacity.
"We need a cemetery; we need a post office. We don't even have a good water system," a woman, who identified herself only as Natalie, told the Jamaica Observer North East.
She added further, "Lime Hall is divided in two constituencies North East and South East (St Ann), and is like nobody no care."
The residents argue that having to travel to St Ann's Bay to receive their mail continues to pose a major challenge as they are unable to afford the transportation cost.
"Right now them could use the community centre (as a post office), but they are saying it is not secure," explained Clive Brown, a resident of the community.
But even as the residents are lamenting the loss of the post office, they are equally concerned about not having a cemetery in close proximity.
The residents said they have to spend more than $9,000 for a burial spot in the St Ann's Bay cemetery which is almost out of the space. This cost, they explained, is "too high in these harsh economic conditions".
The residents say they believe the relevant authorities "need to identify another piece of land for a cemetery" in the community.
"We are calling on the parish council and the other relevant authorities to find a suitable piece of land for another cemetery in the community," Brown said.
Brown said having to travel to St Ann's Bay for burial is an inconvenience, especially to those who would like to have a repast after the funeral service.
In addition to being concerned about having to travel outside the community for services that were once offered in the area, the residents say the unkempt cemetery is now a den for rodents.
The cemetery, they say, has not been cleaned for some time now, and is also overgrown with knee-high shrubs.
The people are, moreover, concerned about a chapel located at the cemetery which has been closed for approximately 20 years.
According to Brown, the building should be knocked down as it not only serves as a breeding ground for rodents but is also infested with termites.
The community is also faced with a serious water shortage as residents said they have been without the commodity since last December, and only had the supply restored after staging a protest.
Now the residents say the supply is far from consistent as the water pump is not in good working condition.
"Is not mischief we making, I would like other media houses to come and see what we facing, because the talking not helping," Natalie said.
St Ann's Bay mayor and councillor for the area, Desmond Gilmore, said while the parish council is trying to acquire a piece of land adjoining the present cemetery, that would only serve for a limited time.
He explained further that developing a new cemetery is not as easy as the residents believe, as such a project would have to go up for national discussion.
The mayor added that all the possible land spaces in the community are privately owned. He further stated that tests would have to be carried out to determine the suitability of these lands, as the cemetery would have to be constructed so as not to pose any environmental challenge. This, he said, could lead to millions being spent to develop a new cemetery in the community.
"It is very difficult for us," he said, adding that "the relevant lands are not available."
Gilmore said that residents pay more at the St Ann's Bay cemetery because the cemetery comes with a grave digger, unlike other cemeteries in the parish.
Turning to the issue of the post office, Gilmore said it was difficult to maintain the rented facility which provided basic services.
He explained that the post office was not as widely used as before, now that most people have cellphones.
The post office, he said, provided two basic services of, paying out the pensioners cheques and issuing bills, which would not require it to be opened daily.
However, if the facility is not kept open five days of the week, Gilmore said the facility would be downgraded to a postal agency, which would mean that the facility could no longer pay out pensioners' cheques.
The mayor admits that the possibility exists for the post office to be set up at the community centre. However, there are things such as security which will have to be considered.