Speaking up for London transport workers
15 Jan 2014This morning Diane Abbott joined representatives from the Nation Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport and the Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association to speak at a protest outside of Parliament. This demonstration preceded a debate in Westminster Hall at 2.30 PM on Future Government funding for Transport for London and station staffing levels. The debate concerned the decision of Transport for London to close all 240 ticket offices in London and cut the 950 jobs of the workers staffing them.
Today Diane Abbott MP said that ‘I struggle to see how Transport for London can be claiming that service levels will improve whilst they propose to cut 950 front line jobs and close down all 240 ticket offices on
the London Underground. Boris Johnson has reneged on the commitment that he made in his 2008 manifesto and reiterated in 2010 that every ticket office would be kept open and has openly betrayed his
elected mandate as Mayor of London.
“It beggars belief that he has refused point blank to meet with the unions representing London transport workers for 6 years, and now intends that the very same workers who were described as “heroic” during the 7/7 bombings, who went back into the stations to help endangered members of the public, be forced to undergo the humiliation of having to reapply for their own jobs.
“In addition to the lost jobs and poorer levels of service, there is also a profound worry about
how safe people feel whilst travelling. This is an issue that disproportionately affects women and disabled and minority groups, many of whom have said they would feel unsafe travelling in London without properly staffed stations.
“I will be fighting these closures on behalf of ordinary Londoners, on behalf of the transport workers who will lose their jobs, and on behalf of all those who know that if this dangerous experiment is allowed to be
pushed through in London, that transport throughout the country will be soon be similarly affected.”