This CLP notes:
- London’s public transport system needs a proper funding settlement from the government – but instead, they are attacking it: threatening cuts to services, fare rises, and attacks on the TfL key workers who risked their lives to keep London on its feet during the pandemic, with over 70 bus workers dying during that time.
- Ordinary Londoners did the right thing during lockdown and stayed home, but this has led to spending on fares for London’s public transport drying up. London’s transport system is too dependent on passenger fares, far more so than most global cities, where government plays its part.
- In 2018 the government removed TfLs operating grant amounting to £700 million pounds. London is the only city in Europe where there is no day-to-day transport subsidy. 4. The Government set a number of conditions before it would provide emergency funding to enable TfL to keep operating, including requiring them to produce a plan to set out how they would achieve significant financial savings. This plan included reducing the extent of the bus network by 4%. This could mean up to 800 jobs being lost, 250 buses cut and 16 routes axed.
- TfL’s did originally launch a minimum 6 week consultation but following representations from Unite and others it has been extended until 7 August https://haveyoursay.tfl.gov.uk/busreview
- The proposals would affect bus travel to, from and within the following 23 London boroughs: Barnet, Brent, Bromley, Camden, City of London, City of Westminster, Ealing, Enfield, Greenwich, Hackney, Hammersmith & Fulham, Haringey, Islington, Kensington & Chelsea, Lambeth, Lewisham, Merton, Newham, Richmond upon Thames, Southwark, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Wandsworth.
- Many London boroughs have no other forms of public transport with huge swathes of London cut off from its neighbours, making it hard for those who work or wish to visit the west end and city. This is made especially worse in South London which only has a couple of underground stations across the whole of it.
- According to TfLs own impact assessment those most affected by these cuts would be ‘women, older people, those on low incomes, and some Black, Asian and minority ethnic people are more likely to use buses (and many people will fall into more than one of these groups). There are also people who are more likely to be impacted by the planned changes, particularly older and disabled people as well as pregnant women and those travelling with small children’
This CLP believes:
1. Buses workers are the backbone of our transport network and buses are critically important to reducing car use, congestion, road danger and pollution.
2. Our public transport system is vital to getting Londoners moving after the pandemic. It’s vital to the national recovery from Covid, and it’s vital to creating a sustainable, green future.
3. London needs an accessible, reliable, effective and efficient public transport system – not job cuts, attacks on conditions of employment and fare hikes.
This CLP resolves:
1. To campaign with bus workers to save our buses in London by undertaking a programme of work, including:
a. Inviting bus worker representatives to address our General Meeting on their campaign and how we can support them;
b. Twin with our local garage and visit it to meet bus workers
c. Call on TfL not to cut our bus services and complete the online consultation which runs from 1 June – 7 August https://haveyoursay.tfl.gov.uk
d. Highlight this issue locally through our digital social media platforms.