Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/525/3900
No more post office closures!
CHANTS OF 'Save our Post Offices' and 'Kick the fat cats out' rang through Stroud in Gloucestershire as over 100 people braved heavy rain to protest at the closure of five post offices. These are part of the government and Post Office Ltd's national list of 2,500 closures.
Chris Moore, Save Our Post Offices campaign
Campaigner Diane Heavens said: "It's an amazing turnout; it proves people want to keep their post offices open and don't want to walk miles to another one." Diane's local post office is targeted for closure and she asks "how on earth are the elderly going to cope?"
But Post Office Ltd are not concerned about local people's hardship. Managing director, Alan Cook, is more concerned at the reported £1 million bonus he will receive if he pushes the closure programme through on time!
At the rally, Labour MP Dave Drew said he opposed local closures. But he supported the Postal Services Act in 2000 and is part of the government attacking our public services, which has closed 4,500 post offices with plans for thousands more. The audience applauded the idea of a new workers' party led by community campaigners, trade unionists, environmentalists and socialists.
The Tory candidate was on the demo, mumbling 'save our post offices', but his party wanted the Post Office opened even wider to the ravages of big business and in government closed 3,500 post offices.
Protests sweeping the country have worried the politicians. Over 30 county councils have hurriedly contacted Essex after its initiative (see article below). Our 'Save Our Post Offices' campaign organised a lobby of Gloucestershire county council, demanding they open negotiations with Post Office Ltd and the government to suspend the county closure plans for the 39 post offices and services under threat.
Such pressure may be an impetus towards a national campaign, especially if campaigns develop in London where 169 post offices face the axe.
In The Socialist 19 March 2008:
National Union of Teachers Conference
Socialist Party youth and students
Socialist Party workplace news
Socialist Party news and analysis
Post Office closures
Socialist Party congress 2008
International socialist news and analysis