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City MP backs urgent calls to fix ‘backlog Britain’ as data reveals tens of thousands waiting over ten weeks for passports

Stephen Morgan MP has backed urgent calls from the Official Opposition for Tory Ministers to fix passport backlogs, as figures show tens of thousands of people have had to wait over ten weeks for a passport.


As travel disruption continues to plague families, the figures revealed by Labour blow apart Boris Johnson’s claim in parliament that everyone was receiving their passport within 4-6 weeks.


The estimate, revealed by the Home Office in answer to parliamentary questions from Labour, suggests that in the first three months of the year – the most recent period for which data is available – over 35,000 people had to wait longer than ten weeks for their passport to be issued.


Last week there were reports of hundreds of people camped out in long queues at Liverpool waiting for an appointment.


Internal figures uncovered by Labour also reveal passport office civil servants were slashed by almost a fifth in recent years. 


Full-time civil servants were slashed from 3,913 in 2016 to 3,232 in 2021, with many replaced by agency staff.


The Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South, Stephen Morgan, said:


“The Home Office is a shambles and Ministers are totally failing to get a grip. 


“Thousands of people across the country have already had to wait more than ten weeks for their passports, and far too many passports are getting lost in the system and no one can get proper information out of the helpline.


“I know this is a particular issue for constituents too, with one having waited over six months on their application, despite providing all the documentation requested by Home Office officials.


“The Government has failed to plan and badly mismanaged our services – this is the Tories’ Backlog Britain and it is letting families down. I will continue to push government to deliver the services people in Portsmouth deserve.” 


Commenting Shadow Transport Secretary, Louise Haigh MP said:


“These figures blow apart Boris Johnson’s nonsense claims.”   


“This backlog is causing misery for families who are already feeling the pinch, and this hapless government is refusing to even acknowledge it. 


“From processing passports to getting people through airports, this Tory government can’t even get the basics right. 


“And now the Conservatives plan further senseless cuts, leaving staff fighting this huge backlog with one hand tied behind their back.”