Sunday 19 January 2014

Ticket Office Closures

One of the highlights of the South East Region TUC Council yesterday was guest speaker Manuel Cortes, General Secretary of TSSA.  Manuel spoke passionately about the campaign against ticket office closures on the London Underground.

These closures, which go directly against an election pledge made by London Mayor Boris Johnson, will leave travellers at all London Underground stations with no option other than a ticket machine to buy their tickets, regardless of their needs or the complexity of their journey.  More worryingly, this is part of a plan to reduce staff at underground stations with a key responsibility for safety.  These are the very staff who would organise an evacuation of the station in the event of a serious accident or a terrorist attack.

Manuel also pointed out that, with Boris Johnson looking to take responsibility for all overground stations in London, this could be the first step to staff cuts at all stations.  It also seems that Amazon has already approached London Underground about using the empty ticket offices.

As Anita Halpin from the National Union of Journalists pointed out, this has a much wider impact than just London.  The London Underground is used by commuters from across the South East and visitors from around the world.

This attack represents the most blatant attempt to cut costs with a complete disregard for the safety of the travelling public and TSSA, alongside RMT, is mounting a campaign which will combine industrial action with organising passengers across London to defeat these measures.

To support the campaign, visit the TSSA website here and the RMT website here.

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