Summer extension must signal end of line for peak rail fares

Mark Ruskell MSP is calling for a permanent end to the rail user commuter and called on the new First Minister to scrap it

A three-month extension to a pilot programme scrapping peak rail fares must be made permanent, say the Scottish Greens.

First Minister John Swinney, under pressure from Scottish Greens, unions and commuters, has agreed a second extension to the programme. The announcement was confirmed at Waverley Station in Edinburgh this morning, 

But our party's climate and transport spokesperson Mark Ruskell MSP warned the SNP led government must go the full journey and scrap the commuter tax altogether.

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Mr Ruskell said:

“The Scottish Greens fought tooth and nail to persuade the government and Transport Scotland to scrap peak rail fares and their response was to first pilot the changes, which has now proven popular with passengers and unions alike.

“Given they are now embedded in people’s daily routine, and are helping to tackle both the cost of living and climate crises, it would be a spectacular own goal if Mr Swinney and the SNP were to bring back what is in effect a commuter tax. The change must become permanent.

“In particular the government must listen to the unions who have been magnificent in their approach to welcoming this new people focused approach. 

“This extended pilot must surely signal the end of the line for peak fares in Scotland, and as with free bus journeys for U22s also delivered by the Scottish Greens, help to transform Scotland’s transport fortunes for all.”

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