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Rail workers back call to disband dangerous TAHE

Apr 9, 2022News

Media release, 9 April 2022: Rail workers have backed the recommendation of a Parliamentary Inquiry to disband the NSW Government’s Transport Asset Holding Entity, saying the entity poses too significant a safety risk to ignore.

Rail, Tram and Bus Union said TAHE, which evidence presented to the Parliamentary Inquiry suggests was set up by the NSW Government as a way of fudging the budget books, can no longer be trusted to oversee a safe transport system in the state.

“Whether it was complete incompetence or something more sinister that drove the NSW Government to introduce TAHE in the first place, the outcome is the same – a system that creates an unsafe transport environment,” Mr Claassens said.

“It’s critical the NSW Government heed the recommendations of the Parliamentary Inquiry and starts taking the necessary steps to disband TAHE.

“The people of NSW deserve a world-class, safe transport system. For the NSW Government to sit on this information, which clearly shows that TAHE is a dangerous accounting gimmick, and not take action to rectify is utterly irresponsible.

Mr Claassens said the creation of Transport for NSW was bad enough with all of the problems it has created in its time but for them to double down and create another agency to further distance itself from the running of public transport is downright dangerous and lives will be lost.

“This is just another example of the NSW Government’s poor handling of transport safety,” Mr Claassens said.

“Right now, the NSW Government is pushing back on rail workers simple claims around safety in enterprise agreement negotiations. This is evidenced by their willingness to use expensive law firms to fight us at every turn and they even resorted to shutting down the rail system to prove their point.

“The fact that the NSW Government has the willingness to develop an elaborate plan to hide transport costs from the budget, but then wait for rail workers to take serious industrial action before they even sit at a table and listen to their expert opinions about simple steps that could be taken to improve commuter and workers safety, beggars belief.

“The sooner the NSW Government realizes that SAFE public transport is a vital community service and not simply a budget line item on a spreadsheet, the better.”

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