Orkney and Shetland MP, Alistair Carmichael, and Shetland MSP, Beatrice Wishart, have published their submission to the Post Office consultation on proposed changes to the Lerwick branch. The letter outlines a range of constituent concerns relating to the proposed move to a retail partner site, and calls for a full and open consultation, with guarantees on the future quality of the service.
Commenting, Mr. Carmichael said:
“We’ve tried to give the benefit of the doubt to the Post Office, but it is clear that there are serious procedural flaws in the way that they have handled the proposal to close the Post Office and to relocate it to a shop. There is a deep and growing concern in the community about the impact of these proposed changes. People are understandably frustrated at what appears to be an attempt to impose an unwanted change on Lerwick.
“It is no good holding a consultation when at every step of the way you tell the public that the decision is already made and that it can’t be changed. Post Office leadership should remember that this is a publicly-owned service. It must be accountable to the community.”
Ms. Wishart said:
“The Post Office plans are a substantial change that will affect users across Shetland, not just in Lerwick. The current location has important benefits for customer privacy and access that must not be compromised.”
“The lack of proper consultation is not respectful to the staff involved or service users. The Post Office needs to pause to allow proper time for community scrutiny.”