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Leaks expose Government's disastrous closure plan

1 May 2012

Leaked emails from the Department for Transport have exposed the secrecy and dishonesty of the Government's plans to cut staff at hundreds of stations across the UK.

Leaked Emails

TSSA has been warning since the publication of the McNulty report last summer that the Government was preparing to cut ticket office staff completely at over six hundred stations and reduce staff at a further 350. Overall 40 per cent of the network would be affected.

As well as TSSA and other trade unions, the proposals have alarmed passenger groups and those representing disabled and older passengers. TSSA’s station survey campaign shows (see page 10), the travelling public say that they value safe, staffed stations and don’t want to see these services cut.

Emails leaked to the BBC prove that not only is the Government pressing ahead with its planned station cuts regardless of its ongoing consultations and the likely public backlash, but it also hopes to avoid the blame by passing the buck to train operators.

One email seen by journalists, from one DfT civil servant to another, said: ‘your way of slipping in there that the initiative comes from TOCs not us is very neat’.

General Secretary Manuel Cortes said: ‘The DfT is getting the TOCs to do its dirty work for it. It is simply by-passing Parliament and allowing the TOCs to close
these stations through the franchise agreements. This is closure by stealth without any democratic mandate at all.’

TSSA-backed community campaign Together for Transport is working with railway passengers and other organisations to fight the station cut plans. Local coalitions are being formed to stand up for staffed stations and build pressure on MPs to oppose ticket office cuts.

Visit www.togetherfortransport.org now to get involved. If you would like to be part of a local Staff Our Stations campaign group, we can put you in touch with others in your area who care about the future of staffed stations.

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