Cost of Living
Proposer: Councillor Dawn Barnes
Seconder: Councillor Marsha Isilar-Gosling
Council notes that:
· The UK inflation rate hit a 90 year high of 9.1 per cent in May, and is expected by the Bank of England to rise further to 11 per cent by October;
· The biggest contributor to last month’s increase in inflation was food prices, which have risen by 32.8 per cent in the past year;
· On 1 April 2022, Ofgem increased the energy price cap by 54 per cent;
· In light of the increased energy price cap, the average standard tariff energy bill will increase by £693 per year, and the average pre-pay meter energy bill will increase by £708 per year (Ofgem, 2022);
· On 6 April 2022, the government increased National Insurance by 1.25 percentage points, which is projected to cost the average family in Haringey an additional £600 a year;
· In 2021/22 Haringey Foodbanks distributed food parcels at a rate of 11 per 100,000 people (Trussell Trust, 2022);
· A 2022 survey from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation showed that 45% of all low-income families (those in the bottom 40% of household incomes) had family members either cut down on or skip meals, or go hungry because they did not have enough money for food;
· Thousands of households in Haringey live in fuel poverty, exacerbated by the fact that 60% of homes in the borough are not energy efficient (Climate Action, 2022).
Council believes that:
Council resolves to:
Stop the bus cuts
Proposed by: Cllr Mike Hakata
Seconded by: Cllr Adam Jogee
This Council notes:
- Public transport makes up over one third of journeys in Haringey.
- Buses are the most affordable and accessible form of public transport available to Haringey residents.
- Buses are used by many local residents across Haringey to get to school, work, and to volunteer.
- That it is estimated that switching just one?journey?in 25 from?car?to?bus?or coach can save 2 million tonnes of CO2, and that a fully laden double-decker?bus?can?take?the place of as many as 75?cars on the road.
- Buses were responsible for only 3% of total greenhouse gas emissions by transport in the UK in 2019.
- Transport for London (TfL) is aiming for all buses in London to be zero emission by 2034, at the latest.
- TfL is one of the only major transport networks in the world that doesn’t receive a central government grant, since the Central Government cut it.
- The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on TfL’s fare income and the need for Central Government support to ensure the continuation of vital public transport links in London.
- With Central Government delaying funding deals and only agreeing to short term funding, TfL is being forced to look at cutting services to balance the books.
- TfL have proposed sweeping changes to London’s bus routes which will negatively impact Haringey residents.
- The Government set a number of conditions before it would provide emergency funding to enable TfL to keep operating, including requiring them to produce a plan to set out how they would achieve significant financial savings. This plan agreed by TfL with the government is for a 4% reduction on the bus network. This could mean up to 800 jobs being lost, 250 buses cut, and 16 routes axed.
- The 349 route will be cut entirely, this bus will no longer run and key (but not all) routes will be maintained by restructuring the 279 to run between Waltham Cross and Stamford Hill.
- The 259 route will be restructured to operate between Ponders End and Holloway Nag’s Head, and would no longer serve stops between Kings Cross and Holloway Nag’s Head.
- The 279 route will be restructured to operate between Waltham Cross station and Stamford Hill, and would no longer serve stops between Seven Sisters and Manor House station.
- The 214 route will be restructured to run between Highgate Village and Pimlico, instead of between Highgate Village and Moorgate.
- According to TfLs own impact assessment those most affected by these cuts would be ‘women, older people, those on low incomes, and some Black, Asian and minority ethnic people are more likely to use buses (and many people will fall into more than one of these groups). There are also people who are more likely to be impacted by the planned changes, particularly older and disabled people as well as pregnant women and those travelling with small children’.
This Council believes:
- Bus routes should be expanded, not cut, in order to promote public transport and provide an effective and affordable alternative to car use in order to improve air quality and tackle the climate emergency.
- Access to affordable transport is essential during this cost-of-living crisis, especially considering that those on lower income, working shifts, and who have multiple jobs often rely heavily on buses.
- Londoners did the right thing and stayed at home during the pandemic, but TfL finances have been devastated as a result.
- Many local jobs are directly or indirectly reliant on bus services.
- Local businesses and high streets are reliant on our bus services, providing affordable transport for both customers and employees.
- London’s transport system is crucial to the economic success of London and the government therefore has a duty to adequately fund TfL to ensure the levelling-up agenda is delivered in London.
This Council resolves:
- To work with other London Councils to call on the government to agree a long-term funding deal with TfL that would protect public transport and active travel investment.
- To ask the Leader of the Council to write to the Secretaries of State for Transport, Environment Food and Rural Affairs, and Work and Pensions expressing our concerns about impact of bus cuts on workers, those on low income, and our residents as a whole, as well as the potential environmental impact of cutting bus routes, and requesting a fair funding deal for TfL.
- Work with the Mayor of London to increase the amount of local people walking, wheeling or cycling.
- To continue to support trade unions taking action to protect workers’ pensions and conditions, oppose job cuts, and call for a proper pay rise.