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Freedom passing the buck to pensioners

Freedom passes, which allow millions of pensioners and disabled people living in England to use off-peak bus travel completely free of charge, is under threat from government cuts.

The scheme currently costs the Government around £1 billion a year. But with the Government cutting overall council funding by 28%, many local councils need to reduce their costs by cutting services.

It could be that the free travel is limited by imposing a time limit on when the can be used

Dot Gibson of the National Pensioners Convention is naturally seething: ‘Cuts in local bus services will have a devastating impact on millions of older people in rural and urban areas,’ she said. ‘If community transport schemes go, or services are axed, it could make all the difference between older people being independent and active or socially isolated and lonely. Once again these cuts are affecting those who are least able to withstand the pain.’

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