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29 March 2019

UK Govt Urged to Ensure a Secure Future for Post Offices

Banffshire & Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson has backed calls from SNP MPs at Westminster for the UK Government to ensure the future of the Post Office network is secure.

SNP MPs obtained an Adjournment Debate at Westminster this week on the matter, highlighting the rising importance of Post Offices to small towns and rural communities and renewed SNP calls for the UK Government to act to protect their future.

The debate comes as UK Finance, trade association for the UK banking and financial services sector, re-negotiates the current deal with Post Office Ltd where financial remuneration for sub-postmasters from banks to carry out services falls short.

Welcoming the strong support at Westminster for sub-postmasters and the Post Office network among his SNP colleagues, local MSP Stewart Stevenson said:

“As bank branch numbers continue to fall, local Post Offices have become increasingly important to local communities - particularly the elderly and those with additional support needs because of the face-to-face banking services that they provide. This is on top of the role they play in services regarding post, advice, pensions, benefit administration, and community spaces.

“It is now imperative that the UK Government steps in and acts to ensure that the Post Office, a publicly owned body, gets a fair deal from banks.

“Our local Post Offices play a huge role in public life – they are both a symbol of the community and a lifeline on everything from pensions and benefits to vital day-to-day banking services.

“In many communities in the North-east, the local Post Office is the last place where a face-to-face service is available, making it essential for the elderly and those with additional support needs.

“Sub-postmasters have continually raised concerns that they are not receiving adequate financial remuneration for services they provide to major banks which are turning over huge profits. It’s time for a fair deal for sub-postmasters.”

Stewart Stevenson
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