Queensland Parliament will debate a Greens motion on Wednesday that calls on the State Government to make public transport free for all passengers across the network as a cost of living relief measure.
The motion also calls for a binding, funded plan to upgrade all train stations to federal disability standards, expand the network and build dedicated bus lanes on key transport corridors.
MP for Maiwar and Queensland Greens spokesperson for Transport Michael Berkman:
“Queenslanders are struggling with transport costs on top of skyrocketing rents, interest rates, groceries and other living expenses.
“Making public transport free would not only deliver hip-pocket relief for thousands of Queenslanders, but it’d incentivise more people to leave the car at home, cutting traffic and reducing emissions.
“For almost the same cost as the new youth prison Labor announced last week, every Queenslander could’ve taken the bus, train and ferry for free for a year.
“The Government already covers around 83% of fares in South-East Queensland - we’re saying increase that slightly to 100%, ditch the costs of ticketing and enforcement, and invest in upgrading the network so it’s a real option for more Queenslanders.
“Cost is just one barrier to using public transport; that’s why we’re also calling for more high-frequency services, dedicated bus lanes along main corridors like the Centenary Motorway, and accessibility upgrades so all our stations are fully accessible.
“This Labor Government has no problem wasting billions of taxpayer dollars on Palaszczuk’s pet desalination plant project or rebuilding the Gabba stadium; surely they can invest in free, frequent and accessible public transport for ordinary Queenslanders?
“Free public transport is simple, quick and cheap. It would have cost just $275 million last financial year, which is just 3% of the whole transport budget in Queensland.
“If the Labor Government is willing to stand up to their friends in the banking, gas and property development industries, we could easily cover the cost of free public transport.”