LABOUR CALL FOR CLAMPDOWN ON TUBE FARE DODGERS – “Some barriers at stations left open 60 pc of time” says Val Shawcross
London Underground has seen a 200 per cent increase in the amount of money lost to Tube fare evasion in the last five years, analysis from Labour London Assembly transport spokeswoman Val Shawcross has revealed.
4.5 pence from every passenger journey on the Tube is now lost to fare evasion.
Val Shawcross, whose analysis comes after the Government announced it would cut at least £700m from TfL grants, called for the Mayor to take “a far more rigorous approach” to tackling fare dodgers.
Calling on the Mayor to reverse his decision to cut up to 897 station staff, saying it would be a “false economy” to cut staff from the ticket line if fare evasion subsequently rises she added:
“With TfL having to watch every penny, we need to see a real clampdown on fare evasion on the Tube, but in reality Boris Johnson’s lax approach has meant a 200 per cent rise in the amount lost over the last five years.
“The government’s decision to slash at least £700m from TfL funds could threaten a number of vital transport upgrade projects in London.
“With TfL being forced to do more for less, the Mayor should be doing all he can to claw back money lost to fare evasion. “That means ensuring Tube stations are properly staffed so ticket barriers aren’t left open and it means upping inspections.
“If you maintain staff numbers you stand a better chance of reducing evasion and the staff pay for themselves. “If you cut staff and fare evasions rise it’s a false economy.
“Londoners have a reputation for honesty. “As fares rise again in the New Year, the overwhelming majority of Londoners who do pay their way will become increasingly frustrated that Boris Johnson isn’t making things tougher for those that don’t.
“We need a far more rigorous approach to this problem from the Mayor” added Val, who is London Assembly Member for Lambeth and Southwark
A London Labour assembly press release says data uncovered by Val Shawcross in the autumn showed that ticket barriers at some stations were being left open up to 60 per cent of the time making life easier for fare dodgers.
“In 2010/11, TfL estimated that approximately £20m was lost to underground fare dodgers. “Yet this year’s estimates show this figure has risen significantly to £61.47m, an increase of 207pc.
“Whilst across the Tube network the number of passenger journeys has increased substantially by 23pc, the amount per passenger journey which is lost to fare evasion has also crept up. “In 2010/11 1.81 pence from every passenger journey was lost to fare evasion, but that has now more than doubled to 4.53 pence lost per single Tube journey” the release added. (Source: GLA Labour party press release).