On the 28th of April Transport for All will be protesting at eight stations across London, calling on the Government to reverse the shameful decision to cancel their key Access for All projects.
Over twenty years have passed since the rights of disabled people to access goods and services were passed into law – yet still many of us cannot use our local train station. Only 1/5 of stations in the UK are step free and the majority of stations do not have lifts, tactile paving, audio visual information, induction loops or the other fixtures that enable disabled people to use them.
Last week, Disability News Service revealed that “the UK has one of the least accessible rail systems in Europe“, contrary to recent Rail Delivery Group claim and their “‘shameful’ attempt to disguise Britain’s inaccessible network”.
Access for All projects have provided vital accessibility upgrades to stations across the UK. It has helped to open up vast swathes of our railways to many people who have never been able to use them before.
However, last year the Government chose to accept the findings of the Hendy review into Network Rail spending – slashing the number of Access for All projects to be delivered before 2019 by 50%
The Government’s decision to defer £50m worth of Access for All funding for another five years is major blow to rail access. Disabled and older people can’t be expected to defer their lives for another five years while accessibility funding is raided to plug holes elsewhere in the Network Rail budget.
Early last year TfA together with Inclusion London, Disabled People against Cuts, Disability Rights UK, RNIB, Muscular Dystrophy Campaign UK and Campaign for Better Transport wrote to the Secretary of State for Transport to express our dismay at the proposals, calling on them to ensure to deliver all the Access for All projects they had promised. Unfortunately the Government chose to push ahead with their plans – delaying accessibility projects at 26 stations across the UK.
In London, 8 stations are affected by this decision
- Battersea Park,
- Hither Green,
- St Mary Cray,
- Seven Sisters,
- Peckham Rye,
- Streatham, ,
- Petts Wood.
Other stations are: Alfreton Parkway, Liverpool Central, Southend East, Llanelli, Barry Town, Luton, Market Harborough, Alok, Cathays, Northallerton, Trefforest, Chatham, Walton-on-Thames, Garforth, Weston-Super-Mare, Grays, Worcester Shrub Hill.
Since the beginning of this year TfA have been meeting with MPs from across the political spectrum including Chuka Ummuna, Bob Neil, Heidi Alexander and Sarah Olney who agreed to support the Access for All campaign in their areas.
Make your voice heard
Following the success of our Southern Rail action earlier this month we will be organising a coordinated protest at every station in London which has had an Access for All project deferred.
It’s so important that we show the Government just how much support there is for Access for All projects across London.
We need as many Disabled and older people as possible to take action outside the eight stations across London and to demand Rail Access Now
WHEN: April 28th
WHERE & TIME:
- Barnes station: 17:00-18:00
- Battersea Park station: 17:00-18:00
- <p=”“>Hither Green station: 14:00-15:00</p=”“>
- <p=”“>Peckham Rye station: </p=”“>17:00-18:00
- <p=”“>Petts Wood station: </p=”“>17:00-18:00
- <p=”“>Seven Sisters station: </p=”“>17:00-18:00
- <p=”“>St Mary Cray station: 15:00-16:00</p=”“>
- <p=”“>Streatham station: 17:00-18:00</p=”“>
It is important that you register so we can keep you informed about the protest you will join at a specific station.
Please let us know if you can come by completing the following brief registration form.