5,000 bus services have been slashed nationwide since the Conservatives came to power, leaving entire communities cut off by decisions taken far away from the people they affect.
No other country in the developed world allows private bus operators the power they enjoy here – to pick what routes they want and charge passengers whatever they wish.
Fares have risen twice as fast as wages. The days of tinkering around the edges of a system that has so clearly failed the public are over. This cannot go on, things must change. And Labour in government will make sure they will.
We will put the public back in control of the essential public transport they depend upon. We will give those communities that want it the power to set bus routes and fares, following the path set by our brilliant Mayors in Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire and in the Liverpool City Region.
Yet, in the West Midlands, it’s clear we’re being left behind by a Mayor who, like his failing Conservative government, talks a good game about bringing in investment and levelling up our region, but where is the delivery?
It is simply not acceptable that residents are now faced with a collapsing service of such a basic and fundamental part of our transport infrastructure. Birmingham and the West Midlands deserves a transport system that is fit for purpose. What’s the point in having a Conservative Mayor if he isn’t going to engage with his own Government and stand up for our region?
Buses are an essential part of people's lives whether that's travelling to work, school or other activities. I've written to Diamond Buses to ask what actions they've taken before simply choosing to cut the 002 service that will have a serious impact on my constituents, in particular in Bartley Green where so many rely on this service.
I will continue to stand with residents to fight for a reliable public transport service.
Read my letter here: