SNP AND CONSERVATIVE MSPs are taking different routes but joint efforts in the fight against unfair delivery charges to Moray and the Highlands.
Regional MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston has welcomed the response from constituents as he works towards a fairer deal for delivery charges – while Moray’s MP Richard Lochhead has gone one butter through launching a dedicated website to aid the fight.
Conservative list MSP Jamie Halcro Johnston called on constituents to contact him with their first-hand evidence of overcharging. His call came as several Holyrood and Westminster parliamentarians have joined in calls for an end to the blatant discrimination against Moray, the Highlands and Islands and parts of Aberdeenshire.
Last night Mr Lochhead’s ‘Fair Delivery Charges‘ website had already attracted 300 of its target of just 500 supporters – and that is expected to increase further in one of the busiest online shopping weekends of the year.
The MSP has recorded a video appeal (below) for the site which also reports individual cases of excessive charging from throughout the region.
Mr Lochhead said: Many of the surcharges are completely unjustified. They are a “delivery tax” costing customers millions of pounds in extra costs others don’t have to pay. There is no consistency in how they are applied and calculated. Some retailers offer free delivery or apply modest surcharges. Other retailers apply eye-watering surcharges for even small items.
“And the idea that much of mainland Scotland does not qualify for “mainland UK” delivery rates is of course utterly ludicrous. On this website you can learn about the campaign which is being supported by fellow MSPs and MPs, the media, and people from right across the country.”
Direct to Businesses
Meanwhile Mr Halcro Johnston now intends to take the views of constituents forward by addressing them directly to the heads of businesses large and small where residents have made complaints. He adds that his campaign is continuing – and he urges people to get in touch with their own experiences of delivery problems, particularly around the Christmas period.
The MSP said: “Sometimes there are good reasons why business need to charge more to deliver to the Highlands and Islands, but in many cases delivery charges quoted seem entirely disproportionate to any additional costs that businesses may incur.
“A number of businesses simply refuse to deliver to remote and rural areas in the region. This restricts people who are sometimes already poorly served by services locally.
“I will now be writing to a number of businesses that people have contacted about and asking them to make clear why they are levying these apparently disproportionate charges or failing to make deliveries at all to certain areas. It is my hope that, together, we can prompt action and make our voices heard.”
Mr Halcro Johnston can be contacted directly by EMail by those wishing to register their experiences with him and further strengthen the campaign.