cashless bus policy.

Meeting: 
MQT on 2014-09-17
Session date: 
September 17, 2014
Reference: 
2014/3330
Question By: 
Andrew Dismore
Organisation: 
Labour Group
Asked Of: 
The Mayor
Category: 

Question

A constituent has brought to my attention a glaring, discriminatory hole in your cashless bus policy.  ON 13/8/14  at 3.10 pm, she tried to take a lady that she has befriended shopping on the number 263 bus to North Finchley.  They embarked upon the bus at Strawberry Vale on the High Road, East Finchley, N2, (North Circular stop) and her  friend, who is disabled, used her Oyster card.  The payment did not register due to insufficient funds.  As my constituent was standing next to her she used her contactless payment card to pay for both her fare and her friend's fare.  However, the driver then berated her that she could not pay for her friend.  When she pointed out that her friend was disabled, the driver brusquely commented "well then, why doesn't she have a disabled travel pass?".  His attitude was appalling.  It was not his business that her  friend did not have a travel pass, nor is it my constituent's , who was more than happy to top up the Oyster card once they  reached the  destination, but that was not acceptable to the driver.  They were then put off  the bus by the driver. They were left humiliated, angry and upset.   TfL's  email dated 2nd July 2014, states: "If you do not have enough credit on your Oyster card or your bus and tram pass or travelcard has just expired, you can now make one more journey on a bus. You must then top up your pay as you go credit before you can use your Oyster card again." Why did this not happen on this occasion?  Do you agree that this is shameful discriminatory behaviour towards a vulnerable member of society?  What training (if any) have bus drivers received on this cashless bus policy? What training have bus drivers received on Disabilities Awareness? How do you expect vulnerable adults like my constituent's friend to know how much money is on their oyster card at any one time as there is no card reader at the bus stop and the nature of her disability prevents her from using computers and she does not possess a contactless payment card?

Answer

Answer for cashless bus policy.

Answer for cashless bus policy.

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. A letter responding to this complaint has been sent to your constituent and I am aware that you have been copied into this reply.