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From The Socialist newspaper, 24 May 2007

Darling attacks Post Offices

GOVERNMENT MINISTER Alistair Darling confirmed the closure, last week, of a further 2,500 post offices out of the current network of 14,000. Ignoring the views of four million people who signed a petition opposing these closures, Darling complained that the network is losing too much money. A government grant of 150 million to protect the network expires in 2008.

However, the main reason for these losses is that the government has ended a number of key revenue-generating contracts, including the TV licence service. And by 2010 the government also plans to scrap the post office card account - which millions of people use to access pensions and other benefits.

Since 1999, 4,000 post offices have been shut and not only in rural areas. The number of post offices in urban areas has been slashed by one-third in this period. After previous closures the government reassured the public that everyone would have access to a post office within a mile's distance. Now they say it will be three miles (95% coverage in rural areas).

If the government is so concerned about 'subsidising' public services perhaps they should consider ending the public-sector Private Finance Initiative schemes, which involve handing over large sums from the public purse in order to guarantee profits for big business.

Dave Carr

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In The Socialist 24 May 2007:

Public-sector workers say...Fight Brown's pay freeze

PCS: Public-sector unity to defend jobs and services

National Shop Stewards Network

Postal workers' strike ballot: Vote 'yes' for a future

Darling attacks Post Offices

Greenwich workers shame councillors


Labour Party leadership

Gordon Brown crowned leader with no contest

John McDonnell speaks to the socialist

The alternative to Labour

MPs say stop looking at us!


Education

Academies: No to these divisive schools

Lewisham council attacks education

School meals - Victory!

Canteen workers oppose school meals cuts

School campaigners shake Wokingham


Socialist Party NHS campaign

Nursing staff strike shows way forward


Socialist Party news and analysis

Homophobia: it's not over

Letter to Polish Ambassador


Marxist analysis: history

Belfast 1907 - a city in revolt


Environment and socialism

Can solar power solve our energy needs?


Scotland

SNP in power - populism and cuts


 

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