DR UK backs rail staff cuts campaigners

Wed,11 January 2023
News Transport
Disability Rights UK is backing campaigners who are warning Transport Secretary Mark Harper that “discriminatory” plans to remove guards from trains, cut staff and close ticket offices will stop many Disabled passengers from travelling by rail and will endanger lives.

The National Federation of the Blind of the UK (NFBUK) has told Mark Harper – who has also had a stint as Minister for Disabled People – that proposals to reduce ticket offices and manned stations by around 80% will have a highly detrimental effect of the 14 million Disabled people in the UK.

The Association of British Commuters (ABC) has called on the Equality and Human Rights Commission to take “urgent action” on railway staffing.

Meanwhile, transport unions, including the RMT, have said that they intend to continue to strike for the long haul and that a reduction in station staff and a move to driver only trains is unacceptable.

DR UK's Anna Morell said: "Even with passenger assistance in place, many rail journeys go horrifically wrong for Disabled passengers, leaving us stranded on trains or in stations or unable to go about our lives due to the Russian Roulette nature of assistance. If staffing is cut to the bone, as the government has suggested, our already failing support stands no chance of providing us with equity of experience with non-disabled people on public transport."

Read more on rail at DNS.