The Freedom Pass is essential for the day to day life of many older people, so they can shop, attend medical appointments and visit family and friends. Without it many would find activities they enjoy out of reach and end up spending more time indoors often on their own. This would lead to social isolation, depression and impact on physical and mental health. All the London Boroughs recognise the benefits of a healthy older population and pay significant contributions towards the cost of the Freedom Pass.
Councillor Seamus Joyce, Conservative spokesman for Transport on Richmond Borough Council, said
"As London Conservative Councillors we will not tolerate any threat to subsidised travel for over 60's and free travel for over 65's It is not right that older people should be worried about losing their lifeline of the Freedom Pass because the Mayor of London seems more intent on playing political games than actually solving TFL's problems. We all understand the losses TFL has suffered because of Coronavirus, but this Mayor has to get a grip on the wider and long term problems of TFL operational funding. He needs to examine the overgenerous pension arrangements, increases in executive pay and income generation. The Mayor has a responsibility to older Londoners and he should make it clear right now that removing the Freedom Pass is not an option he will be considering as a way of plugging TFL's funding gap"