West Dunbartonshire’s MP Martin Docherty-Hughes has called on the UK government to urgently rethink plans to shut Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) offices in Clydebank – warning 200 local jobs are at risk.
DWP offices at Clydebank’s Radnor House on Kilbowie Road have been earmarked for closure, where a total of 205 workers are believed to be facing an uncertain future. A total of 42 centres across the country, including 8 in Scotland, are threatened with closure – with the PCS union saying thousands of jobs are on the line.
In a point of order in the House of Commons this week, local MP Martin Docherty-Hughes slammed the UK government for its handling of the proposed closures – demanding that the DWP Minister explain the government’s justification for closing the site in Clydebank.
The SNP said the closures would hit hardest in areas impacted by poverty and deprivation, suggesting the plans were callous and inexcusable during a cost of living crisis.
MP Docherty-Hughes has called for closures and redundancies to be categorically ruled out, labelling the Tories ‘hypocrites’ for announcing the plans so soon after releasing their ‘levelling-up’ whitepaper.
Martin Docherty-Hughes MP said:
“The 205 people in Clydebank now facing the axe or changes to their conditions are the same key workers who the Tories praised and applauded during the pandemic for their hard work delivering key welfare and benefits payments.
“With all the talk of a ‘levelling up’ agenda it beggars belief that the Tories would now threaten the jobs and incomes of thousands of workers, many of whom live and operate in areas impacted by poverty and deprivation like West Dunbartonshire.
“With a cost of living crisis biting and massive cuts to social security already putting extra pressure on family finances it’s extra callous for these closures to be announced now.
“The best thing the government can do for all concerned is put the interests of hardworking staff and DWP service users in West Dunbartonshire first and categorically rule out any closures and redundancies.”
Martin’s Point of Order in the House of Commons can be viewed here: