The People's Assembly Against Austerity is proud to support Action for Rail's multi-site action planned for 19 August. On that day,the inflation figure used to calculate increases in regulated fares, like Off-Peak and Anytime Day tickets, will be announced.
From the Action for Rail website:
The new fare prices will come into force in January 2015 and, even if capped at the new level of inflation, they’ll still be well above increases in earnings for most of us. Since 2008, fares have risen four times faster than average wages.
Regulated fares would have risen even more this year, if the government hadn’t capitulated to public pressure to cap last year’s rise to inflation only, after several years of inflation-busting rises.
On 19 August campaigners will be protesting the fare rise at stations across the UK and calling for a publicly owned railway – to deliver a better deal for passengers and taxpayers. In Europe, publicly owned railways have lower fares, are more efficient, and profits are reinvested back into the service. Publicly owned East Coast Main Line is a success story, and in 2012/13 returned £16m to the UK Treasury.
For privatised rail services, it’s a different picture. We have the highest fares in Europe with profits extracted to pay shareholder dividends. In 2012/13 Northern Rail, Transpennine Express and Virgin alone paid almost £100m in dividends to shareholders after receiving over £1bn in public subsidy. Evidence shows that about £1bn per year is wasted due to privatisation, and if saved, this could fund an 18% cut in fares.
Join us at stations around the country on 19 August to call for fair fares and public ownership of our railways. Please get in touch with us – firstname.lastname@example.org – if you wish to organise an action.
To find out more and see the list of participating stations, visit Action for Rail.