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Media Release – Past the point of coincidence, more privatisation revelations hit the government

In what is becoming an ever more frequent occurrence, the State Liberal Government is again defending itself against rumours they intend to privatise NSW buses and trains.

The Freedom of Information request revealed 97 documents existed relating to privatisation, but the government has refused to release them, a move the union says should raise concerns.

Secretary of the Rail, Tram and Bus Union, Alex Claassens said the State Government was trying to dodge their responsibilities.

“The NSW Government can’t abdicate their responsibility to provide a safe, affordable and efficient public transport network for Sydney commuters,” Mr Claassens said.

“Selling off our train and bus networks would mean increased costs for commuters, a decrease in services, and cuts to jobs.”

Mr Claassens said that privatisation hadn’t been the saving grace that governments around Australia wanted it to be, and warned New South Wales is risking making the same mistakes.

“The reality of life under privatisation is that the public never stops paying a price to the private providers. Whether it’s in government subsidies, service cuts, or price increases.

“In Melbourne, government payments for the private operation of trains and trams have ballooned by 40 per cent in real terms in the past decade.

“Despite the networks not being held in public hands, the public is still forking out well in excess of $1.5 billion each year, right into the hands of private companies.

The union said that transport needed to be delivered as a public service, not for private profit.

“Businesses are there to make money; simple as that. And they’ll do whatever it takes to do that, even if that means jacking up the price of tickets, cutting jobs or cutting corners.

“At the end of the day, if the NSW Government sells off our train network, commuters and workers will suffer.

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