Local people lobbied Hilary Benn, Labour MP for Leeds Central, over the threatened closure of three post offices in Beeston. Hilary Benn was harangued by local activists and residents for almost half an hour before he could get out of the rain.
Manny Dominguez, Leeds Socialist Party
I told Benn that the decision to close our post offices was an ideological one; that the government has over many years forced the Postal Service to deteriorate. “Since the government opened up the postal service to the free market they have allowed big companies to cherry-pick the most profitable parts of it and paid postal bosses millions of pounds to axe post offices”.
Benn claimed that post office closures were happening because people no longer go to the post office but do business online or in more accessible places. That, he said, is why the postal service is losing money.
I argued that the so-called ‘people’s’ Post Office is losing money because they are giving it away to big businesses, which only makes life harder for working-class people. But this was wasted on a New Labour politician. I handed in our petitions with over 1,750 signatures.
Leeds Socialist Party is involved in Communities Against Post Office Closures (CAPOC) and our members will call on CAPOC to lobby the council to take over threatened post offices in Leeds.