MIL-OSI UK: Mayor and Assembly host Holocaust Memorial Day ceremony

Source: Mayor of London

Victims of the Holocaust were remembered today as the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, and Members of the London Assembly joined with Jewish faith leaders and a Holocaust survivor for a moving ceremony in honour of Holocaust Memorial Day.

 

Guests at City Hall were invited to consider the devastating and far-reaching consequences of individuals, families and communities being wrenched from their homes through persecution, as they reflected on this year’s Holocaust Memorial Day theme ‘Torn from Home’.

 

In keeping with the theme, the Mayor read the poem ‘Homesick’, where an anonymous author laments their loss of place by asking “Why did they tear me away?”.

 

Tony Arbour AM, Chairman of the London Assembly, led the service and Rabbi Jonathan Wittenberg, Senior Rabbi of Masorti Judaism and Rabbi of New North London Synagogue, provided the main address.

 

Guests heard poignant personal accounts from Holocaust survivor Susan Pollack MBE, as well as an emotional contribution from Sokphal Din, who survived the genocide in Cambodia in the late 1970s.

 

The ceremony also featured schoolchildren from across London who read the Holocaust Memorial Day Statement of Commitment and presented their experiences from the Lessons from Auschwitz project, delivered by the Holocaust Educational Trust. Carol Isaacs and Meg Hamilton of the Jewish Music Institute performed three instrumental pieces including ‘Doina’ and ‘Boybriker Nign’. 

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “No matter what is happening in the world, on Holocaust Memorial Day it is crucial we take the time to stop and listen to the accounts of Jewish survivors and refugees who witnessed unthinkable horrors during the Holocaust.

 

“Every year there are fewer people left alive to tell us what they endured during this dark period of history. That is why the work of The Holocaust Memorial Day Trust and the Holocaust Educational Trust in our schools and communities remains so utterly vital.

 

“Today, as we take time to remember six million stolen Jewish lives, as well as the millions killed in genocides around the world, we, as Londoners, must reinforce our commitment to opposing hatred and intolerance in all their forms, wherever they appear.”

 

Chairman of the London Assembly, Tony Arbour, said: “When people, families and communities are wrenched from their homes through persecution or the threat of genocide – lives are destroyed.

 

“This year’s Holocaust Memorial Day theme is ‘Torn from Home’ and as we remember the Holocaust, the 40th anniversary of the end of the Genocide in Cambodia and the 25th anniversary of the Genocide in Rwanda, we must stop and think. 

 

“How can we ensure such atrocities will never happen again? It’s a question we all need to answer – because they must absolutely never happen again.

 

“Having to find a new a new home and a new life is hard enough – it should never have to be because of persecution and genocide.

 

“We stand in solidarity with all those who have suffered and pledge to take action to ensure these tragedies are not repeated.”

Olivia Marks-Woldman, Chief Executive, Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, said: “As people come together across the UK to mark Holocaust Memorial Day 2019, we are pleased to see the Mayor of London and the London Assembly making a strong commitment to remembering all those murdered during the Holocaust, under Nazi Persecution and in the genocides which followed in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

“The event at City Hall will be one of more than 11,000 taking place across the country – in schools, workplaces, local authorities, libraries and many more varied settings.

“At the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust we are pleased to see people learning lessons from genocide, for a better future – particularly at a time when rising antisemitism, anti-Muslim hate and other forms of prejudice are causing real damage across society.”

 

Karen Pollock MBE, Chief Executive, Holocaust Educational Trust, said: “Today, we came together to remember the Holocaust – the darkest chapter in our shared history, where six million men, women and children were murdered, simply for being Jewish.

 

“In many ways, Susan’s story personifies the theme of Holocaust Memorial Day, ‘Torn from Home’, having experienced vast swathes of antisemitism in her home town before being forcibly deported to ghettos and concentration camps. We must treasure this precious testimony, remember the victims, and become witnesses to the stories of survivors.”

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Mayor launches £38m fund to deliver community-led housing

Source: Mayor of London

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today launched a new £38m fund for community-led housing, enabling Londoners to play a leading role in building new social rented and other genuinely affordable homes for local people.

The number of small builders nationally who deliver fewer than 100 homes has halved over the last 10 years*, and the Mayor believes that this trend needs to change in order to help tackle the capital’s housing crisis. Community-led housing allows local residents to get directly involved in building and managing new homes themselves, often through co-operatives and community land trusts.

The new London Community Housing Fund is expected to unlock 500 community-led homes by 2023 and will make grants or loans available to support building, development, and delivery. Some of the funding will also be allocated to provide financial help for potential costs such as submitting planning applications or design fees.

The fund opens today for bids, alongside a new prospectus published online by City Hall providing guidance for community groups who wish to bid, and advice for Londoners who wish to form such a group. Communities wishing to develop their own homes can also contact the London Community-Led Housing Hub, for information and advice, funding, and technical support.

The Mayor is already making small plots of publicly-owned land more accessible to London’s small and medium-sized builders – including community-led housing groups – through a simplified bidding process with standardised legal contracts. The new fund, won from central Government as a result of Sadiq’s lobbying, is significant progress towards his target of identifying a pipeline of schemes for 1,000 community-led homes in London by 2021.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “In London we have become far too reliant on large developers to build new housing. We need more homes to be built by councils and by communities themselves – and so I want to support more community-led housing projects that put London residents at the heart of the process. We have listened to what community-led housing groups say they need, and in response this new fund offers practical support and help with development costs that have often held community-led projects back. I urge Londoners interested in developing their own homes to read our new guidance and bid for funding.”

 

Mother Joyce, community-led housing campaigner with London Citizens’ said: ‘Me and my neighbours are working hard to deliver community land trust homes in my neighbourhood in Croydon. We think it’s fantastic that the Mayor is supporting groups like ours that want to do our bit to build the genuinely and permanently affordable homes that Londoners need. This funding will make a big difference.’

The new fund builds on the Mayor’s previous support for the community-led housing sector, including funding the London Community Led Housing Hub last year with CDS Co-operatives, nine boroughs and the City of London, and the allocation of two small Transport for London small sites in Tower Hamlets and Lambeth to London Community Land Trust. In October he gave almost £1m grant funding to the Rural Urban Synthesis Society, a Lewisham-based Community Land Trust, to help it deliver 33 social rented and other genuinely affordable homes for local residents and workers.

Linda Wallace, Chief Executive of CDS Co-operatives said: “This new fund is the most significant investment in community led housing in a generation. CDS is delighted to be working in partnership with the Mayor to host the CLH London Hub and to enable innovative and sustainable schemes led by London residents. By investing in flexible and high quality early stage support for groups, local authorities, landowners and smaller developers – including London’s smaller housing associations – alongside capital grants, we believe the Mayor’s fund will make a lasting difference to the diversity and quality of affordable homes in our city.”

Levent Kerimol, Director of the London Community Led Housing Hub, said: “The Mayor’s support is vital to the many community-led housing projects gearing up to create more successful developments across London. We’re excited to be working with the GLA to help empower communities and residents and make community-led housing a consistent part of a diverse London housing market. We’re focused on building capacity at the early stages and helping create opportunities for CLH to achieve this.”

ENDS

*2017 Home Builders Federation report: “Reversing the decline of small housebuilders: Reinvigorating entrepreneurialism and building more homes” https://www.hbf.co.uk/documents/6879/HBF_SME_Report_2017_Web.pdf

ENDS

 

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Mayor launches world’s largest air quality monitoring network

Source: Mayor of London

  • Breathe London combines state-of-the-art technology and analysis to identify London’s toxic air hotspots
  • Sensors will measure air quality in tens of thousands of locations around the capital to create the world’s most advanced air quality monitoring network
  • Online real-time maps will help Londoners to avoid pollution hotspots
  • Google Street View cars are equipped with mobile air quality sensors

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today launched the world’s most advanced and comprehensive network of air quality monitors to help investigate and improve London’s toxic air.

 

Breathe London will use a range of cutting-edge fixed and mobile sensors to build up a real-time, hyperlocal image of London’s air quality. The data these monitors collect from across the capital will provide an unprecedented level of detail about London’s air quality crisis and deliver new insight into the sources of pollution.  

 

To deliver this world-leading project, the Mayor has collaborated with the Environmental Defense Fund Europe and Google Earth Outreach, who have equipped two of their iconic Street View cars with air quality sensors. These will take pollution readings approximately every 30 metres at tens of thousands of locations whilst they travel through London’s streets, building up a picture of London’s air quality over the course of a year and identifying areas of toxic air that the network of fixed monitors might miss. Meanwhile, 100 state-of-the-art fixed sensor pods will be mounted on lampposts and buildings close to known air quality hotspots and sensitive locations such as schools and nurseries.

 

The data generated by this new network will be available for the public to view on an

interactive online map on the Breathe London website. The map will show Londoners the condition of the air they are currently breathing and allow more accurate pollution forecasting.

 

This project builds on London’s existing air quality monitoring network, operated by the boroughs and King’s College London. With more than 100 fixed monitors in use London’s existing air quality monitoring network is already the most advanced of any world city. The Breathe London project augments this by providing the ability to identify hotspots all over the city wherever they might be

 

The Breathe London project is being delivered by a consortium led by Environmental Defense Fund Europe (EDFE) and funded by the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF). The project itself was devised by City Hall and the C40 Cities – the leading global alliance of cities committed to addressing climate change. Once this approach and technology has been proven in London, the goal is to see it introduced in cities around the world.

 

The Mayor launched the project this morning at Charlotte Sharman Primary School in Southwark. As well as hosting one of the new fixed monitors, Charlotte Sharman was also one of 50 schools involved in the Mayor’s air quality audits programme last year. The school has now received £10,000 to help implement air quality improvements, including the installation of a new green wall. 

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan said: “London’s filthy air is a public health crisis that leads to thousands of premature deaths in the capital every year as well as stunting the development of young lungs and increasing cases of respiratory illness.

 

“An issue this large and complex requires bold and innovative action, so I’m proud that we’re leading the world in establishing this new monitoring network – allowing Londoners to see the levels of pollution at a local level. This real-time data will also help us learn more about London’s toxic air and help us to put the right policies in place to continue our clean-up efforts. As a recent Aether report demonstrated, these actions will benefit all Londoners, but particularly those living in the capital’s deprived areas. I hope the success of this scheme will act as a blueprint for cities around the world as they battle their own toxic air emergencies.

 

“The launch of Breathe London is just one part of my campaign to improve London’s air quality, alongside cleaning up the bus fleet, funding a scrappage scheme for micro-businesses to remove the most polluting vans and the launch of the world’s first Ultra Low Emission Zone in central London in April. But we can’t win this battle without more help from the Government, who, as we saw from their hugely disappointing Clean Air Strategy yesterday, are still failing to take this problem seriously and offer the support London needs to tackle this public health crisis.”

 

Baroness Bryony Worthington, Environmental Defense Fund, Europe, Executive Director, said: “ The Breathe London partnership is breaking new ground. We’re developing new scientific approaches using the latest technologies to explore London’s air quality in unprecedented detail.

 

“This will provide information for both the public and decision makers that can help drive better solutions to a problem that effects every Londoner. The support of Mayor Khan, C40 Cities, CIFF and all the partners has been invaluable and together we hope to advance air quality management in London, the UK and cities worldwide.”

 

Breathe London will be followed in April by the launch of the world’s first Ultra Low Emission Zone in central London, 24/7, 365 days a year.  Vehicles will need to meet new, tighter exhaust emission standards or pay a daily charge (£12.50 for cars, vans and motorcycles, £100 for buses, coaches and lorries) to travel within the zone. 

 

Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of Paris and Chair of C40 said: “The citizens of Paris, London and all the great cities of the world have a right to clean air to breathe. C40 is proud to support the efforts of Mayor Khan to better understand and map the air pollution across London.

 

“Cities around the world will be watching the results of this project very closely as we work together to clean the air that our citizens breathe and reduce the dangerous emissions that cause climate change.”

 

Karin Tuxen-Bettman, Google Earth Outreach said: “We are extremely excited to be part of the Air Quality in London project. We hope to help make air pollution information more accessible and useful, so that citizens and governments can use it to make decisions.

 

Environmental air quality is an issue that affects everyone due to the potential health and environmental impacts it has. Environmental issues have long been a priority for Google which we tackle daily with several teams such as the Google Earth Outreach who have been the key driver of this project for Google.”

 

Sonia Medina, Executive Director for Climate Change at the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation said: “Air quality affects everyone but the impacts are disproportionately felt by the most vulnerable, especially children.

 

“That is why CIFF is proud to support this world-leading project, which will help reveal the extent and sources of the problem, highlighting what needs to be done and where.”

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Lib Peck appointed to lead London’s Violence Reduction Unit

Source: Mayor of London

   • New Director will bring experience in policing, criminal justice, local government and public health

   • £6.8m VRU already conducting urgent review of London’s homicides and most serious violent incidents since 2014

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, today announced that Lib Peck, the current leader of Lambeth Council and London Councils executive member for Crime and Public Protection, has been appointed to lead the new Violence Reduction Unit (VRU).

 

Set up last year, the Violence Reduction Unit is bringing together specialists in health, police and local government to learn from and apply the successful public-health approach used in Glasgow and elsewhere to tackle the underlying causes of violent crime.

 

Lib Peck will step down from Lambeth Council and join the VRU in a full-time role and will be responsible for leading and directing the unit, including:

• Development of a long-term partnership strategy to tackle violence across the capital;

• Responsibility for the VRU’s budget and resources, including contributions from the Mayor and other partners;

• Building and leading an effective team with a diverse skillset and background;• Being the focal point of contact for the Mayor, Deputy Mayors and senior leaders of the other partner organisations involved in the Unit, including the Metropolitan Police Service, London Boroughs, criminal justice agencies health services, schools and community organisations;

• Making sure that communities and young people are properly represented and consulted.

 

Violence reduction has been a core part of Lib’s career to date across Lambeth and in the third sector. Lib has been the leader of Lambeth Council since 2012 where she focussed on addressing domestic violence and supported the adoption of a public-health approach to violence reduction in the borough in March 2018. As Lambeth leader, she is also the Deputy Chair of London Councils and Executive Member for Crime and Public Protection, leading London boroughs’ cross-party work with the Mayor, Metropolitan Police and partner agencies to keep Londoners safe.

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I am delighted that Lib has been appointed as the director of the Violence Reduction Unit and I know she will bring valuable leadership and expertise, building on her huge experience of working with community groups and partner organisations across London.

 

“We know that the causes of violent crime are extremely complex, involving deep-seated problems in society such as poverty, alienation, mental health issues and a lack of opportunity. Although I am working tirelessly with local councils, charities and community groups on a public health approach to tackling serious violence, it’s clear we need to do more to support them in driving down not just knife crime, but all forms of violent crime.

 

“We have listened to cities like Glasgow and we know that they have had success in tackling crime with similar initiatives. In London, the Violence Reduction Unit will lead the capital’s response to understanding the causes of violent crime and working to stop it spreading by bringing together specialists from right across the city.”

 

New Director of the Violence Reduction Unit, Lib Peck, said: “I am delighted to have been appointed as the first director of the Violence Reduction Unit. Tackling violence is a number one priority for Londoners and I hope to be effective in working with a huge variety of community groups, public sector partners and the police to bring a fresh approach to this devastating and destructive crime.”

 

Niven Rennie, Director of the Scottish Violence Reduction Unit, said: “I wish the new director of London’s VRU well. We know that violence isn’t inevitable and communities working together can create lasting change. I’ve seen a real determination in London to create a safer and better future for the young people of the city. It won’t be easy but with long-term commitment lives can be saved. Violence is preventable.”

 

Vin Diwakar, Medical Director and Interim Director for NHS England (London Region) said: “We look forward to working with Lib in her new role as Director of London’s Violence Reduction Unit. London’s major trauma hospitals are among the best in the world and often deal with the impact of serious violence. We are working closely with the Mayor as no single organisation can tackle this complex issue in isolation.  NHS England strongly supports the coordinated approach led by the Mayor”

 

 

Chair of London Councils, Councillor Peter John said: “It is good news for London that someone of Lib’s calibre will be taking on this critical role. Her experience of working closely with communities will be a big asset. Lib’s passionate commitment to combating serious violence has been a feature of her work leading on the Crime and Community Safety agenda here at London Councils and where she has won widespread respect.”

 

Pastor Lorraine Jones, Director Dwaynamics ABC boxing, said: “It is of great confidence comfort and strength to me and many others that Lib Peck has been appointed as the Director for the VRU. I personally know her as she been fully supportive of me as a bereaved mother in dealing with the ripple effects of youth violence.

 

“Lib Peck is a woman of great expertise experience compassion and seriousness in tackling youth violent crime which is a disease in our capital, having supported initiatives of community groups like Dwaynamics ABC who support vulnerable youth having to deal with the disease gangs abuse causes and the effects of mental illness. I am pleased to see that London will be taking the violence reduction initiative public health approach to tackle youth violence and that the Mayor is relentless in his pledge to end this nightmare.”

 

The Violence Reduction Unit has been set up to divert people away from violence by making interventions at an early age and providing young Londoners with better, positive life opportunities. Before Christmas, Sadiq proposed £1.8 million in annual funding and an one-off £5 million for the unit, on top of an initial £500,000 investment to mobilise the unit. He believes this approach must work alongside enforcement – which is why he continues to support the Met and its City Hall-funded Violent Crime Taskforce, which has made more than 2,300 arrests and removed in excess of 1,000 knives and dangerous weapons from the streets of London.

 

The unit is currently undertaking an urgent review of homicides and the most serious violent incidents in the capital. The results of the review will help to develop a long-term public health approach to tackling serious violence in London and establish key trends to inform its work and set out priorities. It will also help to determine where to focus attention in order to deliver early, local interventions to help reduce the spread of violence across the city.

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Mayor calls on ministers to waive £65 ‘Settled Status’ fee

Source: Mayor of London

 

  • Government’s £65 fee shows it has failed to learn lessons of Windrush scandal
  • Sadiq says Government’s Immigration White Paper does not address the needs of the economy and public services
  • Sadiq believes Government’s immigration approach is one of the reasons that MPs should vote against Withdrawal Agreement tomorrow
  • Mayor also wants expansion and devolution of fast-track scheme to boost jobs in key business sectors

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today accused the Government of ‘not learning the lessons’ of the Windrush Generation scandal and called on ministers to waive the £65 ‘Settled Status’ fee that European citizens living in the UK must pay if they wish to remain here after Brexit.

He has also criticised the Government for ignoring the evidence and advice provided by himself and many of London’s leading business organisations, resulting in a proposed immigration policy which would severely damage the economy and public services.    

Writing to the Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, the Mayor says that the Government’s ‘promised new conversation on immigration is off to a poor start’ and that many EU citizens living here are ‘at risk from the same policies that led to the Windrush Generation experiencing discrimination, destitution, and deportation.’

He has also advised the Home Secretary that the Government’s Immigration White Paper that was published last month does not address the concerns of London’s businesses and risks doing profound damage to growth, jobs and communities in London and across the UK. This is a view that is also supported by the Government’s own economic appraisal of Brexit.

The Mayor has met many senior business leaders from across key sectors of the capital’s economy. Many of them share the Mayor’s belief that the Government’s proposal to restrict future immigration to skilled people earning salaries over £30,000 will be hugely damaging to sectors including health, social care and construction.

This approach to immigration and disregard for the economic and human consequences, is one of the reasons the Mayor has called on MPs of all parties to reject the Government’s Withdrawal Agreement when it is voted on tomorrow. (Tuesday)

Sadiq also argues that the Government’s ‘Shortage Occupation List’, which can fast-track applicants into roles where there is a shortage of workers, should be considerably expanded to better reflect London’s needs, and potentially devolved to the capital.

Writing to the Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, the Mayor said:

“I am disappointed that the Government’s Immigration White Paper did not address the concerns London businesses that I raised with you prior to its publication. The promised ‘new conversation on immigration’ is off to a poor start.

“Your proposal to restrict future immigration to skilled people earning salaries over £30,000 simply won’t allow London to continue to grow its economy and provide crucial public services.

“There are hundreds of thousands of young people who were born in the UK or (like the Windrush Generation) brought here as young children, who are prevented from participating in the economic, social and political life of the UK by the prohibitive cost of applying for leave to remain or citizenship.

“While the previous Home Secretary rightly waived fees for the Windrush Generation, the Government clearly has not learnt the wider lessons. There are many others still at risk from the same policies that led to the Windrush Generation experiencing discrimination, destitution, and deportation.

“The Home Office now faces the unprecedented task of registering 3.4 million EU citizens resident in the UK. Many people will find this process inaccessible and unaffordable. As a matter of fairness, the Government should waive the Settled Status fee for EU nationals and their families who were resident in the UK before the referendum took place.”

EU citizens wishing to stay in the UK after 30 June 2021 will have to apply to the government for ‘settled status’ – allowing them an indefinite right to remain. Applications open on 30 March and will cost £65 for adults and £32.50 for under-16s.

A controversial Home Office advertisement for the settlement scheme has seen the Government criticised with claims ministers are ‘threatening’ EU citizens into registering.

Last month, Sadiq announced that City Hall and the GLA Group (London Fire Brigade, Metropolitan Police, Mayor’s Office of Policing and Crime, Transport for London, the Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation and the London Legacy Development Corporation) will pay the fees for all EU employees if the Government doesn’t act.

The Mayor wants the Home Secretary to publish impact assessments on how the Government’s proposed new immigration policy will affect its ability to meet its target to build 300,000 new homes a year, provide care for the social and elderly and help maintain the hospitality, tourism and creative industries.

He also believes the Government should give businesses more time to respond to the Migration Advisory Committee’s first consultation on the Shortage Occupation List in over five years. This consultation comes to an end today (Monday) – but the Mayor would like it extended so that employers can be adequately engaged.

City Hall has launched the ‘EU Londoners Hub’, providing EU citizens with the latest information about their rights post-Brexit and directing them to expert legal advice, support services and guidance on employment rights. It also signposts the most vulnerable people to advice and support services in London.

Jasmine Whitbread, chief executive at business group, London First, said: “The Government must recognise the huge contribution people from around the world make to the UK. With one in three Londoners born outside the UK, the existing £30,000 salary threshold risks turning away the nurses, engineers, construction workers and talented people we so desperately need.

“Lowering the salary threshold to the London Living Wage, currently £20,155, will avoid a recruitment cliff-edge, keep the UK open to a range of skills, and ensure workers are decently paid.

“Business is stepping up on training and skills but, if the Government doesn’t get immigration right, it risks leaving critical sectors and public services with too few people to do the job.”

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Mayor welcomes progress on ethnicity pay gap but says more work to do

Source: Mayor of London

Sadiq calls on government to force smaller companies to publish ethnicity pay data

  

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today published City Hall’s second ethnicity pay gap report and urged the Government to ensure other organisations, large and small, do the same.

 

While the pay gap has fallen at City Hall and some of the organisations in the Greater London Authority (GLA) group, the figures also highlight there is still much more work to do in eradicating this disparity.

 

The Mayor is determined to do all he can to tackle this issue and City Hall has published its first ethnicity pay gap action plan, which sets out a programme of activity to drive down this inequality.

 

This includes increasing the diversity of interview panels during the recruitment process, working with City Hall’s BAME Staff Network to understand the needs, concerns and experiences of the organisation’s employees, signing up to Business In The Community’s Race at Work Charter, and developing plans for senior staff to develop a more inclusive culture at all levels of the organisation. Organisations across the GLA have also taken steps to increase the diversity of their workforces.

 

The data is being published as the Mayor responds to the government’s consultation on ethnicity pay reporting, in which he urges government to expand mandatory reporting to smaller companies. Under current government proposals, companies with more than 249 staff would be compelled to publish their ethnicity pay gap data – but this only represents less than one per cent of UK employers.

 

Ethnicity pay data published today for the GLA and its functional bodies reveal that white people and those of black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) origin are paid, on average, the following:

 

  • Greater London Authority

White employees: £24.41 per hour, BAME employees: £21.62 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 11.4 per cent (down from 16 per cent in 2017).

 

  • Metropolitan Police Service

White employees: £21.62 per hour, BAME employees: £18.12 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 16.15 per cent (down from 16.7 per cent in 2017).

 

  • Mayor’s Office for Police and Crime (MOPAC)

White employees: £27.53 per hour, BAME employees: £24.70 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 10.3 per cent (up from 3.5 per cent last year).

 

  • London Legacy Development Corporation

White employees: £29.05 per hour, BAME employees: £22.09 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 24 per cent (down from 30 per cent in 2017).

 

  • London Fire Brigade

White employees: £16.51 per hour, BAME employees: £16.51 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 0 per cent (the same as 2017).

 

  • Old Oak Common and Park Royal Development Corporation

White employees: £27.90 per hour, BAME employees: £23.12 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 17.14 per cent (down from 37.5 per cent in 2017).

 

  • London & Partners

White employees: £23.10 per hour, BAME employees: £19.62 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 15 per cent (data not available for 2017).

 

  • Transport for London

White employees: £28.71 per hour, BAME employees: £25.82 per hour – an ethnicity pay gap of 10.1 per cent (up from 9.2 per cent in 2017).

 

In December 2017, Sadiq pledged to lead by example on London’s ethnicity pay gap as part of his drive to tackle inequality across the capital, ahead of publishing data for City Hall and the GLA group last March. The key factor contributing the gap is the lack of BAME staff in senior positions – not that white and BAME people are paid differently for the same roles.

 

The Mayor is also creating an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion advisory group and has launched the Diversity and Inclusion Action Standard – a tool developed by the GLA, the functional bodies and diversity experts, focussing on improving workforce diversity.

 

Earlier this month, he published the third gender pay audit for the group of organisations – which showed the gender pay gap at City Hall has fallen from 6.14 per cent to 4.82 per cent during the last year – alongside a new guide for employers to increase the number of women in leadership.

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “The colour of your skin should have no bearing on what you can achieve. We’ve made progress at City Hall and across the group but this data clearly shows there is more work to be done.

 

“In 2017 I pledged to lead by example and publish data on the ethnicity pay gap in City Hall and across the Greater London Authority group because understanding the scale of this inequality is the first step in tackling it.

 

“In addition, we published an action plan for the way forward. While we should be proud of the progress made, there’s no denying the data presents a mixed picture and there is much more we need to do. Those organisations in which the ethnicity pay gaps has increased must redouble their efforts to tackle this issue head-on.

 

“I’m also clear that government should do more: I’m urging ministers to lower the proposed reporting threshold to reveal a much clearer picture of the problem across London and the UK.”

 

Deputy Mayor for Social Integration, Social Mobility and Community Engagement, Dr Debbie Weekes-Bernard, said: “It’s vital we all play a role if we are to tackle the barriers and inequality still faced in our city.

 

“The Mayor’s ground-breaking social integration strategy underlines his commitment to improving conditions for all Londoners and he continues to work hard to shine a light on the challenges facing our communities.

 

“We’re determined that City Hall leads by example and that’s why the Mayor is taking action to tackle the ethnicity pay gap and urging organisations to do the same.”

 

Race Equality Director for Business in the Community, Sandra Kerr OBE, said: “It is great to see the Mayor leading the way on pay and ethnicity reporting, showing clear progress since initially publishing the data in 2017.

 

“By identifying where improvements are still needed, celebrating progress that has already been made and setting out an action plan for further progress, the Mayor recognises that tackling the ethnicity pay gap requires a consistent commitment across the group to narrow and ultimately close the ethnicity pay gap.

 

“The Mayor understands that the best places to work are inclusive, with opportunities for employees to develop and progress as well as gain fair reward, pay and recognition.”

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Mayor’s action on air quality will benefit poorest Londoners the most

Source: Mayor of London

  • People living in the capital’s most deprived areas are exposed to more NO2 pollution.
  • Report confirms that mainly as a result of the mayor’s air quality policies this inequality will reduce.
  • Report also confirms that all primary and secondary schools exceeding NO2 limits will drop from 453 in 2013 to zero by 2025.
  • But if London is to be within World Health Organisation PM 2.5 limits by 2030, further government action is needed.

 

New research published today shows how the Mayor’s bold measures to tackle London’s filthy air, including launching the world’s first Ultra Low Emission Zone in April, will benefit all Londoners, but particularly those living in the capital’s deprived areas.

 

Research has long indicated a strong link between air quality and social inequality, which Sadiq is determined to address alongside his work to protect the environment and improve the health of Londoners. Across the country, toxic air leads to around 40,000 premature deaths every year, and increases the risk of asthma, cancer, dementia – imposing a financial burden of more than £20 billion on the economy every year*. London’s filthy air makes chronic illnesses worse, shortens life expectancy and damages lung development in children.

 

People living in the capital’s most deprived areas are, on average, exposed to about a quarter more NO2 pollution.** Today’s report, commissioned by City Hall and carried out by air quality and climate change emissions consultants Aether, shows that the Mayor’s tough air quality measures would help improve air quality so that the difference would narrow considerably, with the gap reduced by 71 per cent by 2030 – from 7.55 µg/m3 in 2013 to 2.23 µg/m3.

The research reveals children from some of the poorest backgrounds will benefit the most from the Mayor’s bold measures to tackle air quality. A previous Aether study found of the schools in the highest polluting areas of London around 80 per cent were defined as being ‘deprived’**. Today’s report predicts that as a result of the Mayor’s action, no schools in the capital will be exposed to illegally high levels of air pollution by 2025. The number of primary schools in areas exceeding legal limits for harmful NO2 is projected to drop dramatically from 371 in 2013 to just four in 2020, while the number of secondary schools is expected to fall from 82 in 2013 to only one in 2020, with no schools at all in high polluting NO2 areas by 2025.  

 

The report also looked at the exposure of different ethnic groups. Areas of London where people from mixed or multiple ethnic groups were more likely to live were also more likely to have higher levels of NO2, whereas those areas where white residents were more likely to live were more likely to have lower concentrations. Mainly as a result of the Mayor’s tough measures, including ULEZ, the difference in exposure between these areas is expected to reduce by 85 per cent.

 

The Mayor’s Ultra Low Emission Zone, launching in the central London congestion zone on 8th April and expanding to the North and South circular in October 2021, is just one element of Sadiq’s bold strategy to improve Londoners’ health and protect the capital’s environment. It will play a significant part in achieving these improvements by removing the most polluting vehicles from the areas of poorest air quality.

 

Today’s report highlights that while excellent progress is being made to reduce NO2 levels, these improvements are lower for PM2.5, with current research suggesting that all Londoners will still live in areas exceeding World Health Organisation guidelines in 2030. Sadiq simply does not have the regulatory powers he requires to address this problem – including ULEZ-style powers for construction equipment and the Thames, and powers to address emissions from buildings – and he continues to lobby Government for these ahead of new clean air legislation being tabled later this year.

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Improving London’s air quality is a social justice issue as well as a public health matter, given it is certain communities which are affected by filthy air the most. Today’s report shows that some of the poorest Londoners will benefit the most from the bold measures we are taking to tackle London’s filthy air. By taking tough action, we can ensure that within six years the most deprived schools will be no more likely to have higher exposure to NO2 pollution than the least deprived schools. It cannot be right that your background and where you live determines the quality of the air you breathe and that is exactly why measures like the Ultra Low Emission Zone are so vital.”

 

Katie King, Director of Aether, said: “This builds on earlier analysis undertaken by Aether and shows that the link between deprivation and poor air quality can be substantially reduced through positive action. The very mixed social structure of London complicates this type of analysis but the overall pattern of both improvement and a reduction in inequality can be clearly seen. However, there is clearly more to do if the WHO Guideline Values for particulate matter are to be achieved across the capital.”

 

Simon Gillespie, Chief Executive of the British Heart Foundation, said: “Air pollution contributes to thousands of heart attacks and strokes every year, which disproportionately affects the most deprived people in our society. It is encouraging to see action being taken in the capital to tackle this, as air pollution is one of the biggest public health threats facing our generation. The introduction of ultra-low emission zones will help to lower the dangerously high levels of air pollution in London, and protect the heart and circulatory health of those who are most at risk.

 

“It’s now paramount that action is taken at national level to protect those most vulnerable from the damaging effects of the air we breathe. This means bringing the WHO’s guideline limits into UK law to ensure that everyone across the UK is protected from the health harms of poor air quality.

  

Earlier this week, Sadiq urged London’s drivers and business owners who drive in the London Congestion Charge Zone to check whether their vehicles comply with new, stricter emissions standards designed to tackle the capital’s toxic air, as the three-month countdown to the launch of the central London ULEZ began. Replacing the current Toxicity Charge, vehicles will need to meet new, tighter exhaust emission standards or pay a daily charge (£12.50 for cars, vans and motorcycles, £100 for buses, coaches and lorries) to travel within the zone. The Congestion Charge will be unchanged by the introduction of ULEZ and will continue to apply for all eligible vehicles entering the Congestion Charge zone. Drivers can use TFL’s simple online checking tool to see if their vehicle will meet ULEZ’s tough new emissions standards. 

 

Alongside introducing the world’s first ULEZ, the Mayor is also cleaning up the capital’s bus and taxi fleets, rolling out rapid charging infrastructure to support electric vehicles, delivering improvements to some of London’s most polluted schools, planting thousands of new trees and funding a scrappage scheme to help micro-businesses prepare for ULEZ.

 

Alastair Harper, Head of Advocacy at Unicef UK, said: “No child should be forced to breathe air that could damage their body and impact their future. For those living in areas of deprivation who already face a myriad of social and health issues, toxic air is particularly harmful.

 

“With mounting evidence of children’s vulnerability to air pollution, it’s encouraging to see this has been acknowledged and acted on by the Mayor of London. It is vital that other UK cities also prioritise this issue. Unicef UK stands firmly behind initiatives to tackle air pollution and its impact on children’s health. The new Clean Air Strategy will be a crucial opportunity for the Government to make a national commitment to clean up the air and prioritise action for children.”

 

Professor Stephen T Holgate CBE, FMedSci: “This report indicates that the action being led by the Mayor of London will make a real difference to people’s lives in the capital. It is vital that that the lessons coming from London are replicated across the country. Action that improves the air quality helps address the fundamental health inequities that exists in the UK, and the findings that highlight the potential improvements outside schools are particularly noteworthy.”

 

  

ENDS

 

* Royal College of Physician’s report, Page xiii: https://www.rcplondon.ac.uk/file/2912/download?token=rhEZPBDl

** According to a 2013 Aether report -https://www.london.gov.uk/sites/default/files/analysing_air_pollution_ex…

*** based on free school meal eligibility – https://www.london.gov.uk/sites/default/files/analysing_air_pollution_exposure_in_london_-_technical_report_-_2013.pdf.

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Mayor urges motorists to check their vehicles before ULEZ launch

Source: Mayor of London

 

  • Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) will significantly reduce emissions to help tackle the thousands of premature deaths linked to air quality every year
  • 1.5m drivers have already checked their vehicle’s compliance with ULEZ emissions standards at: https://tfl.gov.uk/modes/driving/ultra-low-emission-zone/check-your-vehicle  
  • Major awareness campaign underway to ensure drivers are ready for ULEZ

 

With three months to go until the launch of the world’s first Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in the central London Congestion Charge Zone, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has urged London’s drivers and business owners who drive in the zone to check whether their vehicles comply with new, stricter emissions standards designed to tackle the capital’s toxic air.

 

The world’s first ULEZ will come into effect in the current central London Congestion Charge Zone on 8th April 2019 and will replace the current Toxicity Charge*. Vehicles will need to meet new, tighter exhaust emission standards or pay a daily charge (£12.50 for cars, vans and motorcycles, £100 for busses, coaches and lorries) to travel within the zone. The Congestion Charge will be unchanged by the introduction of ULEZ and will continue to apply for all eligible vehicles entering the Congestion Charge zone.  

 

Drivers can use TFL’s simple online checking tool to see if their vehicle will meet ULEZ’s tough, new emissions standards.  

 

Across the country, toxic air leads to 40,000 premature deaths every year, and increases the risk of asthma, cancer, dementia – imposing a financial burden of £20 billion on the economy every year. London’s filthy air makes chronic illnesses worse, shortens life expectancy and damages lung development in children

 

The introduction of ULEZ is a central part of the Mayor’s far-reaching plan to tackle London’s toxic air and address the severe health impact of poor air quality. The Mayor has already started projects to clean up the capital’s bus and taxi fleets, roll out rapid charging infrastructure to support electric vehicles, delivered improvements to some of London’s most polluted schools, planted thousands of new trees and funded a scrappage scheme to help micro-businesses prepare for ULEZ.

 

A major awareness campaign is underway by Transport for London (TfL) to ensure drivers are prepared for the introduction of ULEZ. This includes contacting more than 2.5 million registered Congestion Charge users whose vehicles do not meet the ULEZ standards, to remind them the new zone begins on 8 April 2019. TfL is also contacting other drivers it identifies in central London whose vehicles are not currently ULEZ-compliant. This has helped encourage 1.5 million visits to TfL’s online compliance checker so far.

 

More than 300 ULEZ warning signs are currently being installed across central London. The signs warn drivers at all entry points to the zone, and on a number of key approach routes, to ensure their vehicle meets the tough new emission standards. These are complemented by posters and digital banners across the whole TfL network, a social media campaign and adverts across print, radio and online video. To date, 3,000 businesses have been spoken to by TfL officials to make them aware of the introduction of ULEZ. Many of these businesses have confirmed that they are already ULEZ compliant or are putting in place plans to upgrade their vehicles.

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said:

“London’s toxic air is a public health emergency and the introduction of ULEZ is exactly the sort of bold action that is required to deal with it. I’m delighted we were able to bring the introduction of the zone forward to April this year, ensuring people both in and outside the zone experience the benefits of ULEZ sooner.

 

“I know Londoners are passionate about improving the quality of the air they breathe so – with only three months to go before the launch of ULEZ – I’d encourage everyone who drives within central London to spend a couple of minutes checking whether their vehicle complies with the new emissions standards. 

 

“A predicted 45 per cent fall in harmful emissions within the zone should be a great start to improving the lives of millions of Londoners.”

 

Alex Williams, Director of City Planning at TfL, said:

“We are committed to tackling London’s dangerously toxic air. The introduction of the Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) will bring huge benefits to the health of all Londoners, including drivers.

 

“With three months until ULEZ starts, we are reminding all drivers in London to take action and check their vehicles’ compliance through our website. Londoners can choose a wide range of affordable and sustainable public transport options, including buses fitted with the cleanest engines, cycling and walking. Alternatively, a ULEZ compliant vehicle can be purchased from around £500.”

 

Sonia Farrey, Director of Advocacy at Unicef UK, said:

“Breathing polluted air can have serious and long-lasting effects on a child’s health and development. It is all of our responsibility to ensure that children can grow up in a clean and safe environment.

 

“With more than 800 schools, nurseries and educational institutions across London situated in areas with dangerous levels of air pollution, the Ultra Low Emission Zone presents a real opportunity to help protect children from this threat to their health.”

 

CBI London Director, Eddie Curzon, said:

“Improving the capital’s air quality is of real importance to London’s business community, and firms across the city stand ready to help achieve this.

 

“The Mayor of London’s ULEZ standards are a decisive step and TfL’s ongoing support for businesses will be essential in ensuring compliance. Looking ahead, the CBI continues to welcome any action taken to secure a consistent national clean air policy.’

 

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Mayor publishes City Hall pay gap data

Source: Mayor of London

 

  • Sadiq expands Our Time initiative to aid employers in addressing the gender imbalance in senior leadership
  • City Hall report reveals latest gender pay gap data and action plans as the Mayor pushes for greater gender equality in the capital

 

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has today launched a new guide for employers to increase the number of women in leadership roles and address the gender pay gap.

 

On the day Sadiq publishes City Hall’s third gender pay gap report, he has also released the ‘Our Time: Supporting future leaders’ toolkit to help employers across the city to introduce his gender equality initiative in their workplaces  

 

One key factor behind the gender pay gap is a lack of women in senior jobs. The new Our Time toolkit works as a step-by-step guide for employers to learn from the approach taken at City Hall to increase the number of women in leadership roles. The toolkit is a comprehensive package of materials which covers advocating for the introduction of the scheme right through to training materials and evaluating the success of the programme.

 

The Our Time programme was launch by the Mayor in May 2018 and has been up and running across the GLA group – TfL, LFB, MOPAC, LLDC, OPDC, the GLA and the Metropolitan Police  since September 2018. Since then public and private sector organisations – including Waltham Forest Council, Lambeth Council, Croydon Council, Westfield Unibail Rodamco, Crossrail, Lloyds of London and Metropolitan Thames Valley – have already committed to introducing it in their workplaces. In addition, more than 850 people had signed up for updates on Our Time since it was launched.

 

Traditional approaches, such as mentoring schemes, while valuable and widely used, are not working to remove the gender pay gap or help women into senior positions. The Our Time initiative works to break down these barriers by providing high-potential women a more structured way of accessing the networks, contacts and opportunities often needed to achieve leadership roles.

 

The gender pay gap at City Hall has fallen from 6.14 per cent to 4.82 per cent during the last year. However, data published today paints a varied picture when it comes to tackling the gender pay gap across the functional bodies of the GLA. While there has been a modest improvement at the core GLA and Metropolitan Police, the gap has widened slightly at TfL.  Three of the seven GLA Group organisations have a negative pay gap, that is, women are on average paid more than men.

 

According to the data, as of 31 March 2018 men and women working full-time are paid, on average (median), the following:

 

  • Greater London Authority

Women: £23.23 per hour; men: £24.41 per hour – a gender pay gap of 4.82 per cent. The pay gap has fallen by 1.32 per cent in the last year.

 

  • Transport for London

Women: £22.08 per hour, men: £28.14 per hour – a gender pay gap of 21.5 per cent, 1.8 per cent higher than it was 12 months ago.

 

  • Metropolitan Police Service

Women: £19.52 per hour, men: £21.62 per hour – a gender pay gap of 9.71 per cent. The pay gap has decreased from 12.48 per cent the last year.

 

  • Mayor’s Office for Police and Crime (MOPAC)

Women: £27.91 per hour, men: £26.06 per hour – a gender gap of minus 7.09 per cent. The pay gap was 1.42 per cent last year.

 

  • London Legacy Development Corporation

Women: £24.59 per hour, men: £29.85 per hour – a gender pay gap of 17.6 per cent, 0.2 per cent less than last year.

 

  • London Fire Brigade

Women: £17.31 per hour, men: £16.51 per hour – a gender pay gap of minus 4.62 per cent. The gap was minus 7.66 per cent 12 months ago.

 

  • Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation

Women: £27.35 per hour, men £23.23 per hour – a gender pay gap of minus 17.72 per cent. The gap was minus 20.66 per cent last year.

 

One of the reasons for the gender gap in the GLA Group is that there are not enough women in senior roles. It is not because women are being paid less for doing the same job.

 

Every organisation in the GLA Group has published updated action plans that set out what they are doing to ensure women have equal opportunities in the workplace.

 

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: As Mayor, I am determined to do everything in my power to address the gender pay gap that has existed unchallenged and hidden away for far too long. 

 

“The data we have published today paints a varied picture.  It does not make for comfortable reading but if we are to correct this injustice we must continue to highlight the gaps and the need for action.

 

“That is exactly why we are also publishing the ‘Our Time’ toolkit today – schemes like this have been proven to support more women into senior leadership roles and to help bridge the gender pay gap. We’ve collated what we’ve learned and created an all-encompassing action plan so that employers across the city can follow suit. It is shameful that in 2018 women remain under-represented at all levels of government and leadership roles – I want to encourage all industries across the capital to commit to addressing the shocking imbalance we still see in positions of power today through adopting ‘Our Time’. 

 

“Last year, we marked the one hundredth anniversary of women being able to cast their vote in a general election – moving forwards, let’s honour this historic milestone by taking bold action to remove the barriers to women’s success and ensure that our capital is a shining light in the fight for gender equality.”

 

The Our Time toolkit based on the Mayor’s approach will help staff and employers introduce the initiative in their workplaces. The extensive toolkit was developed by City Hall, learning from the group of women taking part in its first round of the scheme, which is ongoing. In addition, early adopters who have already pledged to introduce ‘Our Time’ in their workplace have tested and fed into the toolkit.

 

The Mayor has appointed women to a number of senior roles at City Hall, which includes seven of his 10 Deputy Mayors: Joanne McCartney as Statutory Deputy Mayor, Fiona Twycross as Deputy Mayor for Fire and Resilience, Sophie Linden as Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Justine Simons as Deputy Mayor for Culture and Creative Industries, Shirley Rodrigues as Deputy Mayor for Environment and Energy, Heidi Alexander as Deputy Mayor for Transport and Debbie Weekes-Bernard as Deputy Mayor for Social Integration. Sadiq also appointed Amy Lamé as London’s first Night Czar. He has also appointed Mary Harpley as Chief Officer – the first woman to lead the GLA staff as its most senior officer, while Lyn Garner became chief executive officer at LLDC in 2018.

 

Cressida Dick is also the Metropolitan Police’s first woman Commissioner and Dany Cotton is the first person to hold the office of ‘London Fire Commissioner’.*

 

Since first publishing gender pay gap data in 2016, City Hall has put in place a number of measures to promote training and promotional opportunities for women, including Our Time. These include providing fair and equal opportunities for development and progression, and creating and increasing flexible working options and other family friendly benefits. For example, a new policy has been launched to support parents of premature babies and new-born babies requiring neonatal care. City Hall has also launched unconscious bias learning that will be rolled out more widely across the GLA in 2019. The GLA has also published a Gender Pay Gap Action Plan that further details actions to reduce the pay gap.

 

City Hall has also launched the Diversity and Inclusion Action Standard – a tool developed by the GLA in conjunction with its functional bodies and external diversity experts that focuses on actions that can be taken in order to raise the bar collectively on workforce diversity.

 

To view details of the gender pay gap audit visit https://www.london.gov.uk/about-us/governance-and-spending/spending-money-wisely/gender-pay-gap-report-march-2018-data

 

Sam Smethers, Fawcett Chief Executive: “We welcome the lead the Mayor is giving here. Getting more women in to senior roles will help to close the pay gap. But we also need a statutory requirement on employers to publish their action plans and procurement used as a lever to drive change amongst those companies contracted to work in the public sector.

 

“The pay gap in the capital is amongst the largest in the country. The Mayor has a pivotal role to play not only in closing the pay gap in London but nationally.”

Staynton Brown, Director of Diversity and Inclusion at TfL, said: “We’re proud to be taking part in ‘Our Time’, which will help women at TfL to harness their full potential and advance their careers. The experience and new networks gained by the women involved in the programme, will enable them to approach opportunities and challenges with ambition and confidence. At TfL, we are working hard to make sure that we are representative of the city that we serve and research shows that having a diverse workforce brings innovation and creativity. By supporting ‘Our Time’ along with a range of other activities and outreach programmes, we are showing that gender should never be a barrier to progression.”

 

Michael Mulhern, interim CEO for OPDC, said: “OPDC is delighted to be taking part in the Our Time initiative. It is a great opportunity to equip and actively support talented women to fulfil their potential and to progress on to more senior roles. We believe that a diverse workforce brings efficiency and competitive advantage, and we have made a commitment to do all that we can to ensure that the OPDC is reflective of the rich diversity profile of London.”

MIL-OSI UK News

MIL-OSI UK: Third year of Mayor’s TfL fares freeze begins

Source: Mayor of London

  • Pay as you go fares on Tube, DLR and bus services across London still the same as they were in 2016, while National Rail fares have increased by around 8.8 per cent in the last three years.
  • Fares freeze has helped millions travel more affordably, while cushioning London from the drop off in passenger numbers seen elsewhere around the country
  • Monday to Sunday’ (weekly) capping on Oyster to launch across Tube and rail network by Spring 2019 following last month’s successful introduction for bus and tram users.

 

Fares on TfL services have been frozen again for a third year as part of the Mayor Sadiq Khan’s continuing commitment to make them affordable for all Londoners – at a time where National Rail fares have increased by 3.1 per cent.

 

The Mayor’s four-year freeze of TfL fares continues to help Londoners and visitors by ensuring travelling by bus or tram in London costs not a penny more than it did in 2016. Pay-as-you-go journeys on the Tube, DLR, Emirates Air Line and rail services where TfL fares apply are all also frozen, as well as the cost of hiring a Santander Cycles bike.

 

Using pay as you go with a contactless card or Oyster, off-peak fares including Zone 1 start at £2.40 and off-peak adult Tube, DLR and London Overground fares within Zones 2-6 are just £1.50. In addition, the Mayor’s Hopper fare applies all day and night, allowing Londoners to take unlimited bus and tram journeys across the capital within an hour for just £1.50, with the total cost capped at £4.50 for the whole day. 

 

By 2020, Sadiq’s TfL fares freeze will have saved the average London household around £200. This is in addition to the Mayor’s ‘Hopper’ bus fare that has now saved money on more than 250 million bus and tram journeys since it launched in September 2016. TfL fares increased by more than 42 per cent in the eight years before Sadiq became Mayor.

 

As with previous years, Travelcards and associated caps, which are set in agreement with the train operating companies under fares regulations set by the government, will increase, by 3.1 per cent. This increase means that the overall increase in National Rail fares since May 2016 is now around 8.8 per cent and could exceed 10 per cent by January 2020.

 

Evidence suggests that the benefits of the Mayor’s freeze of TfL fares has helped cushion London from the severity of impacts seen elsewhere around the country. 2018 was also the most successful year ever for Santander Cycles, with a record-breaking 10.5 million journeys made across the year and more than a million hires taking place in five of the 12 months in the year.

 

Despite a recent upturn in Tube ridership, with 7 December seeing the busiest day in the Tube’s 155-year history with 5.031 million journeys, passenger numbers overall have been slightly down, particularly on buses. However, a reduction in bus passengers is being seen more generally across the UK, with year ending June 2018 figures from the DfT showing a 1.5 per cent decrease across England.

 

All TfL travel concessions are also protected, ensuring that children, those over 60, veterans, apprentices and those on unemployment benefits continue to benefit from free or discounted travel.

 

Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said:

 “I’m delighted to be freezing TfL fares for the third year in succession. Our ‘Hopper’ bus fare and TfL fares freeze has made travel more affordable for millions of people across London, and helped keep public transport an easy and affordable option for everyone.

 

“Our TfL fares freeze is in contrast to the private rail companies hiking up fares again, despite the litany of cancelations, delays and overcrowding on services like Southern and South Western Railway. Given the continuing woeful services on suburban rail routes, the increase in rail fares of 8.8 per cent over the last three years is simply a disgrace.”

 

Shashi Verma, Chief Technology Officer at Transport for London said: We are committed to ensuring that customers pay the lowest correct fare by making our fares system as simple and easy to use as possible. Throughout 2019, we will be introducing further enhancements to our ticketing system, including completing the introduction ofweekly capping on Oyster to allow all customers to benefit from more affordable and convenient fares.”

 

Darren Shirley, Chief Executive of Campaign for Better Transport, said: “We welcome the Mayor’s fares freeze for 2019. Affordable public transport is crucial to keeping London moving and helping improve the capital’s air quality.”

During 2019, TfL will be delivering further improvements for customers to help make travel more accessible and convenient for those traveling in and around London. As confirmed by the Department for Transport in November, pay as you go will shortly be expanded to cover rail services to Epsom and Hertford North, with a wider consultation on extending pay as you go across the rail network around London expected to take place during 2019.

 

Following the successful introduction of ‘Monday to Sunday’ (weekly) capping on Oyster for bus and tram passengers in December, TfL is also now working with the Train Operating Companiesto extend this to cover Tube and rail passengers by Spring 2019. The cap, which is already available for contactless users, will ensure that Oyster customers are never charged more than the cost of an equivalent 7-Day Travelcard.

 

The fares freeze is being fully paid for through TfL’s efficiencies programme, which has been outlined in its December 2016 Business Plan. TfL’s efficiencies programme has already helped save more than £500m a year.

 

MIL-OSI UK News