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Government Ducks Its Responsibility for Post Offices and Post Office Closures - Brake

November 20, 2007 1:20 PM

Tom Brake MP, today expressed grave concerns that the Government are not accepting any responsibility for the impact on local communities of Post Offices closures in London.

Tom recently asked the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what assessment they had made of the effects proposed closures would have on local communities in London.

Responding, Pat McFadden the Minister of State for Postal Affairs, expressed no views on the impact closures would have on vulnerable groups or those who might have mobility problems such as people with disabilities or senior citizens. He simply said that it was "not possible" to say which offices would close until Post Office Ltd had drawn up implementation plans.

The Department did say that Post Office Ltd needed to take into account access criteria and local geography, as well as the impact on local communities but the Minister gave no assurances that the Government would guarantee people had easy access to post offices within their local area or that they would not suffer long-waiting times at any remaining post offices.

Commenting, Tom Brake MP said, "It is simply not good enough for the Government to ignore the hardship Post Office closures will cause. Nobody will buy their claim that 'it's nothing to do with us'. They will be held responsible for the damage closures will cause to local communities services".

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