In 2014 the Treasury replied to less than half of letters from MPs

Report shows some departments falling seriously behind on communication

 

Today the government has published a report showing how each department performed in responding to correspondence from MPs and Peers in 2014.

Some of the numbers are shocking, with the worst offenders being:

The Department for Communities and Local Government, which replied to just 42 per cent of 8,574 letters within the target time of 10 working days

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The Treasury, which replied to just 52 per cent of 8,242 letters within the target time of 15 working days

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The Ministry of Justice, which replied to just 64 per cent of 3,419 letters within the target time of 15 working days.

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MPs and Peers may write to government departments to express concerns raised in the community, or on behalf of constituents who want to raise a complaint or give feedback. The fact that so many of these letters go ignored does not suggest a great deal of community engagement.

Nor does it bode well for transparency and accuracy, as this kind of correspondence is vital for ensuring MPs have access to up-to-date departmental figures and information.

But others did an impressive job in responding to huge volumes of letters:

The Department of Health managed to reply to 97 per cent of 17,932 letters within 18 days.

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The Department of Work and Pensions replied to 83 per cent of 16,542 letters in 20 days.

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And the Foreign and Commonwealth Office replied to 88 per cent of 11,649 letters within 20 days.

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Ruby Stockham is a staff writer at Left Foot Forward. Follow her on Twitter

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