Public transport organisations write open letter to ask world governments to keep services running

An open letter by four international transport organisations has laid out a case for continuing public services around the world during the coronavirus pandemic.

The letter has been signed by leaders of the International Union of Railways, the International Association of Public Transport, the World Organisation of United Cities and Local Governments, and the International Transport Workers’ Federation.

It argues that passenger services are essential to "society and the economy", and that in the wake of the Covid-19 virus, those working in public transport should be supplied with "appropriate protective equipment and products" to ensure a "health crisis does not turn into a social one".

The letter calls for government support for "vital public services", as well as the preservation of jobs and workers’ conditions of employment.

The letter also asks that drivers not interact with passengers, and recommends that measures be taken to restrict cash ticket sales and allow for boarding away from workers.

The letter says that the frequency of services should meet travel demand, and that once Covid-19 is deemed under control, regular operations should be resumed quickly.

The complete letter is available to read here.

Image: A train driver wearing a face mask (Jaroslav Moravcik/Dreamstime)

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