"The only people this decision will benefit are the shareholders at Virgin Trains and Stagecoach" says London Green Party Councillor Caroline Russell as the Green Party are set to take part in the national demonstration this Saturday against the privatisation of the East Coast railway service.
The Green Party will take part in a national demonstration this Saturday calling for the East Coast Mainline to remain in public hands and protected from privatisation.
East Coast Mainline has flourished under public ownership. Photograph courtesy of Roger Geach.
Mass protests have been organised the length and breadth of the East Coast route in response to the announcement made this Monday that the network, which has been in public ownership since 2009, is to be sold-off to Virgin Trains and Stagecoach.
This is despite the fact that, under public ownership, the network has outperformed all other railway lines and delivered the highest levels of customer service.
Pledging her party’s support for the protests, London Green Party Councillor and party spokesperson for local transport Caroline Russell said:
“It demonstrates just how ideologically committed to the selling-off of our vital public services this government is that it would take the best performing railway network out of the safety of public hands and throw it into the lion’s den of privatisation. The only people this decision will benefit are the shareholders at Virgin Trains and Stagecoach. Once again it is the public that will lose-out.
“The Green Party believes public services should be run for the benefit of the people that use them, not to make a profit for the minority who happen to own them. Only the Greens are committed to restoring the railways to public ownership and ensuring that passengers are provided with the transport service that they deserve at a price they can afford. That’s why I am proud to stand today with protesters up and down the country calling on the government to listen to their very simple message: don’t jeopardise a high quality public service just to turn a quick profit.”
The “Save the East Coast Mainline” demonstration in London takes place this Saturday 6th December from 11am to 1pm outside King’s Cross Station.