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Act of vandalism on London Overground

20 September 2018

Responding to the announcement that Arriva Rail London are launching their 28 day consultation tomorrow (Friday 21 September) on the closure of 51 ticket offices, TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, said

"This is an act of vandalism on London's transport infrastructure and a return to the bad old days underfunded, understaffed and under secure service. I will be raising the matter personally with Deputy Mayor  for Transport Heidi Alexander when I meet her at Labour Conference in Liverpool next week.

"TSSA and RMT are committed to retaining ticket offices and providing more station staff. Passenger numbers are high and passengers with different needs need the support of designated ticket office as well as platform and gate line staff.  Our members tell us ARL are not currently able to provide the service that passengers want. 

"So today's announcement is not being made in the interests of passengers or staff or frankly the good running of the Overground. There are currently 106 vacancies across the Overground network so cost savings are hardly necessary and with violent crime up 42.5% at 36 stations, it beggars belief that they plane to live just 14 ticket offices out of 65 intact.

“Passenger and our members' safety is paramount to our union. We will use this opportunity to engage passengers, the communities and politicians to prevent a return to the bad old days. These stations are at the heart of many communities. We know, and they know that staff are popular with customers because they made it their poster campaign only a few years ago.

"Londoners know that removing ticket offices from London Underground stations is an ongoing disaster. Our members get the brunt of passenger frustrations when ticket machines aren't working or when passengers need information. We went on strike over this and only ended our dispute when London Underground agreed to recruit more staff.

"We will continue our campaign to get central government to restore the capital's transport grant. If George Osborne hadnt axed it in 2015, we would not see management feeling pressed into making such stupid decisions today."

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