LondonNet News Headlines
|Livingstone Gets Poll Boost on Tube
- But government is set to ignore public on privatisation
LONDON MAYOR Ken Livingstone has published the results of a poll which show an overwhelming majority of Londners share his desire to keep the Tube in the public sector.
But, though 91 per cent of respondents agreed with the propostion that the Underground should stay under unified public management, the poll is unlikely to help Livingstone in his dealings with the government, which today announced a programme of privatisation across broad swathes of the public sector, including schools and hospitals.
Bob Kiley, Livingstone's appointee to head up London Underground, has been in negotiations with ministers for months with little success. Today's Queen's Speech - in which the government sets out its major plans for the coming year - makes sorry reading for those opposed to farming out public services, and it is difficult to see the Tube being allowed to go against the privatisation flow.
Perhaps surprisingly, rail unions, which had previously been the source of the most implacable oppostion to Tube privatisation, have now reached a tentative agreement with Underground management and have called off planned strikes which had been voted for by an 11 to 1 majority by rank and file members.