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Local Offices

Volume 177: debated on Monday 23 July 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security (1) if he will provide details of the agreed timetables for the introduction of new local office reorganisation, region by region;(2) if he will make it his policy that the full range of social security benefits and levels of services provided by local offices of his Department, in particular that located at Hill House, Mansfield, will continue after the implementation of his Department's organisation review.

I am happy to confirm that it is our policy that local offices should continue to provide the full range of social security benefits and current or improved levels of service following implementation of our network review. Once local managers have been appointed later this year they will start detailed planning, the principal aim of which will be to ensure that the best possible service to local customers is provided.The timetable for implementation of the new network will depend on many local and national factors including the availability of resources. Final decisions have yet to be taken.I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to the hon. Member for Rochdale (Sir C. Smith) on 11 July at columns

242–43 for more details of the network review.