Thursday, 4 August 2022

TSSA calls for public transport fares to be slashed – let’s all do the same!

  TSSA calls for public transport fares to be slashed – let’s all do the same!

Aug 4, 2022

By Paul Atkin


TSSA calls for public transport fares to be slashed – let’s all do the same!

In a sharply worded blog on the TSSA web site, General Secretary Manuel Cortes notes that we have to deal with 

two crises running in parallel – the climate … heating up at an unprecedented rate leading to increased extreme weather disasters and …an ever-deepening Tory cost of living crisis, inflation and costs are up, but wages are stagnant

 and calls for a sharp cut in public transport fares to reduce costs, fossil fuel use and pollution. 

He contrasts the miserable experience of the UK  with “the biggest increase to rail fares in nine years, ..set to go up further” – at a time when people won’t be able to afford to run their cars even if they want to – with imaginative and successful action to cut fares across Europe..

  • In May Germany set up a €9 a month ticket for unlimited public transport over the summer. This has been… a huge success. Over 31 million tickets were sold and passenger numbers reached up to pre-pandemic levels, increasing rail travel and decreasing road use…The €9 ticket is a fraction of the normal cost of travel, amounting to around a sixth of the price of the cheapest monthly ticket available for Berlin’s central zones”.

  • Austria launched its Klimaticket (climate ticket) in late 2021… to encourage people to ditch their cars, the scheme proved extremely popular, with its website almost crashing when the tickets went on sale. The annual pass, priced at €1,095, works out at just €21 a week or €3 a day.

  • In July, Spain announced it will make public transport free, by reinvesting the funds from a windfall tax on energy companies. From September until the end of the year, passengers can ride commuter and medium-distance trains across the country totally free of charge.

  • Luxembourg was the first country in Europe to make public transport free in 2020 and despite the pandemic is happy with the results. As well as off-setting price rises for working people, the move was also designed to reduce car congestion, as Luxembourg has more cars per person than any other country in Europe and is consequently plagued by heavy traffic. It is expected that public transport usage in Luxembourg will have increased by 20 percent by 2025.

The British model – that prioritises the profitability of private operators over the needs of travellers and climate – is unsustainable, both in costs for commuters and impact on carbon emissions. This also applies to buses. As Cortes says, 

Investing in our public transport is part of the solution to the problem, we are already in a crisis and we must act now. Making travel affordable is proven to take people out of their cars and onto greener, more efficient public transport. What are we waiting for?

Slashing public transport fares has to be a key demand in our fight over our cost of living this winter. Let’s make sure all our unions and campaigns take it up!

For more info heck out the Future of Rail; a TSSA project which makes the case for well funded public transport run by highly skilled workers for the benefit of the economy and the people. Follow on Twitter @FutureOfRail

Saturday, 30 July 2022

Proud to support @ASLEFunion strike today


We all need public services to work well. That means funding them properly, under public control, and paying public service workers fairly. #SupportRailWorkers Proud to support strike today at Bristol Temple Meads picket line w fellow Cllr Barry Parsons

Thursday, 28 July 2022

Tuesday, 19 July 2022

Deputy Leader Hustings! Green Party Trade Union Group


The Green Party Trade Union Group welcome candidates at 7pm on Monday 18th July for our online hustings for the Deputy Leader of the Green Party!
The Green Party of England & Wales is electing its next Deputy Leader. Voting starts on 1st August and the candidates are making their case to the party membership: Shahrar Ali; Nick Humberstone; Zack Polanski; Tyrone Scott.
At this event, you will have the opportunity to quiz the candidates and hear their pitch on all things labour movement. What is their vision for the party's relationship with trade unions? What is their offer to workers? How will the party support workers to build power under their Deputy Leadership?

Sunday, 17 July 2022

Why BT Workers Are Going On Strike



Friday, 15 July 2022

Cleaners, porters, post-room and security staff at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine are going on strike


Cleaners, porters, post-room and security staff at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine are going on strike - starting with 3 days of strike during LSHTM graduation days this coming week.

The workers are demanding fair pay when they come in-house on 1st August, but for six months LSHTM management has refused to negotiate with them. Instead the management have responded by trying to victimise six of the cleaners for taking part in protests and union meetings and by spreading defamatory information about the campaign. The workers have had enough!

The strike days are 18th, 19th and 20th July. This is the schedule for each day - come and join for as much as you can:

⏰ 5.30am: Picket line at LSHTM

✨ 7.30am: Breakfast and public meeting at Keppel Street

📢 9.30am: Gather for a protest starting 10am!