Stupid decision of the day : Post Office loses government contract for pension and benefit payments

Given the talk before the last general election of saving the ‘Post Office’, I hope the that the details reported in the Guardian of the Post Office losing the contract from the department of works and pensions to cash ‘giros’ in the Post Office will be reviewed and reconsidered.

This contract which the Unite union say’s is worth £20 million to the Post Office network, and will potentially effect 350,000 people across the country will have a far wider effect than just the loss of this contract and will as outlined in the Unite press release undoubtedly be a further death knell to the sustainability of the Post Office network, which as well as losing the contract will also lose from the reduced ‘footfall’ from ‘benefit recipients’ going elsewhere.

Now whilst I have no particular objections about the company that has being awarded the contact, I do agree with the comments from the General Secretary of the National Federation of SubPostmasters George Thomson who said :

“This is a bitterly disappointing decision from the government. Benefits cheque customers rely on their local post office to provide this important service, with subpostmasters and trained Post Office staff providing assistance to hundreds of thousands of vulnerable customers each week. Many of these customers will be unwilling or unable to travel to a Paypoint outlet such as an off-licence or garage forecourt to claim their weekly pension or benefit allowance.”