Words: Richard Beecham, local democracy reporter
West Yorkshire Mayor Tracy Brabin has ordered that the wearing of facemasks remains mandatory in local bus stations – including Pudsey.
Despite the lifting of restrictions nationally the recently elected mayor has also urged Government to mandate the use of masks across all public transport networks to encourage people to feel safe on their travels.
Ms Brabin has has said people keep wearing face masks in all the stations run by West Yorkshire Combined Authority.
These include Bradford Interchange, Keighley, Batley, Brighouse, Castleford, Cleckheaton, Dewsbury, Halifax, Huddersfield, Leeds, Ossett, Pudsey and Pontefract.
Mrs Brabin said:
“The past 18 months has been incredibly hard for our West Yorkshire communities – no more so than for the vulnerable and for people who have tragically lost loved ones.
“This is why, today I am urging people across the region to wear a face mask on all of our public transport networks. I hope this will give encouragement to those who are vulnerable – such as those using public transport to attended chemotherapy appointments – to continue to travel on public transport.
“With that in mind, and with 71 per cent of the public supportive of the continued use of face coverings, I am today mandating the use of face coverings across bus stations in West Yorkshire. Whilst I would like to go further to include buses and trains, we are doing what is in our power.
“I have been consistently clear with Government – they have the power to mandate face masks across all transport networks and I would support them to make that decision as restrictions lift. While the vaccination roll out is impressive, we still have further to go with infections across West Yorkshire still high.
“We have come so far. Let’s stick together, support each other so places like West Yorkshire can recover and thrive.”