To not decide to scrap free travel for those who are under 18. As a teenager who has relied so much on free travel, it has allowed for me to go to school without the worry of an extra expense and explore around the beautiful city of London also. Destroying free travel would hurt so many of us.
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By scrapping this as part of a £1.6bn TfL bailout package, those from poorer backgrounds will be forced to pay to go to school. This will impact those who cannot freely travel to school (driving, cycling or walking) . As there are fines put in place for children who do not return to school in September 2020, this will further increase economic problems for many families in the UK. This will increase poverty within the UK, causing more people from poorer backgrounds to fall further into debt.
The suspension of free travel for 11-17 year olds will help reduce demand for public transport at peak times during the Covid-19 pandemic. This was agreed by the Government and the Mayor of London.
The Covid-19 pandemic has given rise to an unprecedented health and public safety emergency. The £1.6 billion Extraordinary Funding and Financing Agreement agreed by Government and the Mayor of London to enable Transport for London (TfL) to continue operating services contained a series of conditions to facilitate safe travel on public transport in London.
The suspension of free bus and tram travel for 11-17 year olds will help to reduce demand for public transport so that those who need to use it can do so safely.
The Department for Transport continues to work closely with TfL, the Department for Education, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and other key partners on how the suspension can be operationalised, whilst ensuring that any child eligible for free home to school travel under national legislation will still receive it.
Department for Transport