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WHITE PAPER OUTLINES EXTENSION OF CITIZENS' CHARTERS

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Roger Freeman, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and minister for public service, will unveil a white paper late...
Roger Freeman, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and minister for public service, will unveil a white paper later today which will outline proposals to introduce new citizens' charters.

It will also look at what has been achieved since the charter scheme was introduced by John Major five years ago.

Mr Freeman said the scheme had been a great success.

'I think the ordinary citizen will realise that there has been a change in attitude in the public sector; that in many public services you can improve the quality year-on-year. You can ratchet up the standards whether its in education, health, whether its in the Passports Agency or the performance of a local authority.

'We have literally hundreds of examples where service has improved. What we're doing in this white paper is looking forward five years with vision, indicating where we can expand the number of charters and where we can improve the service even more in key areas like health and education'.

Mr Freeman rejected the argument that citizen's had a legal right to a certain level of service, with access to the courts if that level was not delivered. The government's intention was to produce a cultural change among those working in public services.

'And I pay tribute to the teachers and doctors and police and local authority servants who have improved services', he added.

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