NFRN has handed over around 1,000 petition cards to Menzies Distribution, emphasizing that independent news retailers have had enough of punishing carriage charges and poor service.
The NFRN delegation, comprising national president Mike Mitchelson, vice president Stuart Reddish and head of news Brian Murphy, along with local retailers, delivered the cards On Thursday (18 April) to Linda Gardiner, head of customer services, and Claire McDonald, channel manager – retail, at the news wholesaler’s Edinburgh head office.
Speaking afterwards, Mitchelson said: “Carriage charges are unfair and illogical and news wholesalers and publishers have to wake up to the fact that when it comes to these costs that independent retailers have had more than enough.
“Indeed, earlier this month retailers served by Menzies Distribution saw their carriage charges rise by an average of nearly 4 per cent. This was a hit that few independent retailers could take, especially as it coincided with steep rises to national minimum wage rates, utility bills and pension contributions.”
NFRN’s Enough’s Enough petition warns that the news retailers are at breaking point, as carriage charges have risen by 20 per cent since 2013.
“If further reviews and rises continue to take place without consultation or without clear justification, local and traditional community stockists will close in great numbers,” it said.
The petition call for a full, independent and transparent review of the decision making process behind carriage charges.
“I have had ENOUGH of carriage charges, and request that a full and transparent review of the decision making process is undertaken by an independent party at the earliest opportunity.”