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Union bids to save post office branches
11:20am Tuesday 20th August 2013 in Echo News
UNION members met with Post Office managers at a meeting held to save two branches.
The Communication Workers Union came to Basildon on Thursday to debate the proposed franchising of Post Offices in Basildon Town Square and the Laindon Centre.
They are two of 76 which the Post Office wants to transfer to franchised businesses.
Traders from the Laindon Centre feared the number of shoppers would drop and ruin their businesses if it was closed or offered a reduced service.
Residents and union members were also concerned about the level of trust the public would have in a private company dealing with confidential records like passports and finance.
Phil Rackley, independent Labour councillor for the St Martin’s ward, which covers Basildon town centre, chaired the meeting.
He said: “For years and years the Post Office has been firmly based in the community. It’s not like an ordinary privatised business, it has other objectives than purely profit.
“Even Margaret Thatcher, when privatising publicly-owned businesses, didn’t touch the Post Office.
Everything seems to be focused on profit.”
Gary Herbert, regional manager for Post Office Counters service, said there would still be a post office serving the Laindon area in the future.
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