The Government's decision to cap the funding to regional councils for free bus trips for over 65 year olds is a nasty Christmas present from John Key, Labour’s Senior Citizens spokesperson Ruth Dyson says.
“It will mean that the current free off-peak time bus travel for Super Gold card holders will be cut.
“Social isolation and loneliness are the biggest challenge facing our increasingly older population. Being able to get out and about is a critical factor in overcoming these barriers.
“We know that many buses have lots of spare seats during off-peak times. Filling them up with older people who want to get out is a smart investment in their wellbeing.
“The Prime Minister has been talking about tax cuts in future but he is funding them by cutting services to people who have given years of work to our country.
“The Auckland Council has already looked at chopping free non-peak transport and today ECan is considering cuts as well. This is a short-sighted decision by the Government and will be a Scrooge-like Christmas present for our seniors,” Ruth Dyson says.