Support needed for restriction extension

Manuel Cortes TSSA General Secretary

Responding to government confirmation that current Covid restrictions will stay in place for at least another four weeks, travel and transport union TSSA says support is needed to make the restrictions work and tackle the virus effectively.

In a press conference this evening, Prime Minister Boris Johnson confirmed that the planned stage four ‘unlockdown’ date of 21 June will now be delayed by at least four weeks, until 19 July. The move follows rising case numbers and hospitalisations linked to the Delta variant of the virus and previous easing measures brought in on 17 May.

Manuel Cortes, TSSA General Secretary, said: 

"Continued restrictions are sadly needed, but they will only be effective if sufficient support is also provided. You can’t take with both hands and expect people to comply.

"Government guidance to 'work from home if you can' will continue to hit public transport passenger numbers, so that must be recognised rather than seeing the imposition of cuts like those Grant Shapps is pushing at Transport for London. And travel restrictions continue to severely affect our travel trade, with a bespoke support package desperately needed for the travel industry.

"The most important thing is that we take the right steps to tackle coronavirus, save lives and take pressure off our NHS, and provide support for those workers and sectors of our economy who will suffer as a result of ongoing restrictions."

Public transport ridership remains at less than 60% of pre-Covid levels for our railways, with revenue lagging even further behind as passengers change their habits. Our travel industry has been brought to virtual standstill as traffic light restrictions cover most popular holiday destinations going into a second summer season of disruption. 

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