DUP MP Carla Lockhart has met Minister of State at the Home Office, Kevin Foster MP, to urge the Government to enact an Action Plan to speed up passport application processes.
The Upper Bann MP said: “In recent months my office has dealt with several hundred passport application issues. The biggest complaint being the time between submitting an application, and holding your passport in your hand.
"Guidance from the Home Office has changed, replacing a six week indicative turnaround to a ten week timeframe. Yet even with that, we see people outside this timeframe before receiving their passport. It is simply too long for this process to take.
"Whilst I have helped many people secure passports this year, I have a number of constituents who missed their holidays because of the delay in processing passport applications. Therefore we need to see urgent steps put in place to clear the backlog, and restore a reasonable timeframe for applications.
"My message to the Government today was clear - enact a clear action plan now to bolster resources in the Passport Office network. Let us get back to the six week timeframe as a first step, along with the fast track option being restored. Both these steps would transform the service and ensure no one misses their summer holidays this year because of a passport application backlog.
"I welcome the Ministers actions thus far that have helped, but more must be done.”