I’ve written to Govia Thameslink Railway, Southern Railway and SouthEastern Railway on maintaining the rules on wearing face coverings on public transport after other restrictions are lifted on the 19th July.
The Prime Minister has shown that he is unwilling to keep my constituents, immunocompromised people, and those who rely on public transport safe. I am asking for transport operating companies to step up and protect people who use their services.
Full Text of Letter:
Last week the Prime Minister announced that the Government would lift all restrictions on July 19, including the law on wearing face masks on public transport.
Many people, such as those who are immunocompromised, don’t yet know how well the vaccines work for them and are extremely fearful of the removal of these protections.
I believe that mask wearing should remain compulsory on public transport (unless exempt) and in stations after other restrictions are lifted on July 19. The British public agree – 71 per cent of people polled by YouGov think that face masks should continue to be mandatory on public transport after restrictions are lifted.
Wearing masks in close-proximity enclosed spaces like on public transport is a simple measure that helps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and gives confidence to travellers, which in turn helps to boost ridership and the economy.
This is particularly important in London where the population is younger and less likely to have full protection from the vaccine compared to other parts of the country. Many of my constituents rely on public transport for essential journeys and dozens of them have let me know that they feel extremely concerned about the prospect of face coverings being dispensed with across the public transport network.
The Prime Minister has shown that he is unwilling to maintain the rules on face coverings to keep my constituents, and those who rely on public transport, safe. Will your company now consider using by-laws and conditions of carriage to require passengers to continue to wear face coverings on their services beyond 19 July?
I look forward to your response.
Vicky Foxcroft MP