The Premier and Transport Minister are on notice as they hand over a public bus route to private operators today, pushing ahead with their privatisation agenda in the face of bitter opposition from the community, Labor and unions.
From today private operator, Transit Systems, will operate Region Six which covers 233 bus routes in the Inner West to Strathfield and Olympic Park and down through southern Sydney.
The NSW Labor Opposition will hold the Liberal State Government to its promise that people living in the inner West will not experience driver shortages or cutbacks to services. Transport Minister Andrew Constance has promised that bus reliability and punctuality will improve.
History shows that the experience for commuters when public transport is privatised has been negative. When the Liberals sold off the Hunter’s ferry, light rail and bus services, it lead to chaos for commuters in Newcastle.
Shadow Minister for Transport Jodi McKay says the Government is on notice and that the people of the inner West will be watching very closely to ensure services do not suffer as a result.
Labor has been holding the Liberal Government to account over its policy to privatise buses since the news of privatisation plans leaked in May 2017. The decision to privatise broke an election commitment made by the Liberals in the 2015 campaign.
Last week, Labor Leader Luke Foley announced there will be no more privatisation of public transport if Labor is elected in 2019.
Quotes attributable to Shadow Minister for Transport Jodi McKay
“The Premier and Transport Minister have to guarantee that services will not be cut and drivers will not be sacked as a result of this sell-off.
“NSW Labor will be watching closely to hold the Liberal Government to account as it pushes ahead with this privatisation.
“We have seen a shambolic meltdown of the public transport system under this Government.
“Residents in the Hunter have had a horrible experience of their buses being privatised.”