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TSSA join Labour's election campaign for a people's railway

18 May 2017

TSSA has joined the election campaign today to drive forward Labour's pledge to bring train operating companies into public ownership and end the ongoing, nationwide passenger misery caused by rail privatisation.

TSSA campaigned against the sell-off of our rail industry by John Major in 1993 and has remained constant and vociferous opponents of privatisatised franchises which, Richard Branson himself described as, "a licence to print money," for private shareholders.

Peak time UK passenger fares are now amongst the most expensive in Europe and ticket pricing tariffs here are as notoriously confusing as those in the privatised energy industry making if difficult for passengers to take advantage of so-called competitive low fares. 

The quality of UK carriage infrastructure and, standards of passenger customer service and journey times have plummeted as train operating companies have made cuts and shed tens of thousands of jobs in their successful  quest to drive shareholder dividends up.

And shockingly 75% of Britain's rail operating companies are now concentrated in the hands of mon- Uk companies including the state-owned rail companies of Germany, of Holland,of France and of Italy. 

TSSA today relaunches our satirical video, 'EU Say Thanks UK', which highlights the facet that Britain's train companies are in fact the nationalised assets of these big EU rail states, who use profits made here to subsidise passenger fares in elsewhere in the EU. 
 
As the Financial Times itself reports this morning, "Train operators’ total UK income in 2015-16 was £12.4bn, including fares and government subsidy, according to the Office of Rail and Road. They made a net payment to government of £600m in 2015-16."

"The FT's figures alone show The Labour Party's measured manifesto commitment to bring Britain's railways into public ownership as the current franchises expire is an economic no brainer," says TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes.

"Taking them back in-house as they expire returns a money-making asset to the British economy without  any capital outlay is  example of how simple reboot of our economy would make it work in favour of British taxpayers and passengers.  

"The point with what Labour is currently proposing, is that unlike yesteryears, we are not taking over lame ducks but white swans who are incredibly profitable. It means the money made here could be reinvested in rail expansion and infrastructure here and we could reduce fares at the same time.  

"Labour are proposing taking back control of our rail industry from June  9, not leaving it post Brexit in the hands of European States of other corporate monopolies to continue to use our rail system as their cash-cow.

"The Tories manifesto are committed to more of the same rail policy - bring foreign and corporate conglomerates in companies in and let them harvest their vast profits out - leaving rail commuters facing  more misery and leaving far too many parts of our country with creaking, not fit-for-purpose rail infrastructure.

"Labour are offering us the opportunity to vote to take back control of our rail industry and to take back control of the profits made out of the industry. Passengers, economists and rail industry experts know it is the right choice to make. TSSA is fully committed to campaigning with them to make a British People's Railway a reality from June 9."

 

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