Metlink is moving forward with amendments to its advertising policy to better reflect the community it serves.
Metlink general manager, Scott Gallacher says the changes, as part of Metlink’s normal review processes, were a chance to do the right thing for the region.
“Like any public transport provider Metlink needs to make use of advertising opportunities to help fund and strengthen services, but we’ve put considerable effort into ensuring what we promote aligns with the values and expectations of our diverse communities across the region,” says Scott Gallacher.
Metlink has long ruled out advertising fast foods on its fleet of buses, trains and ferries and recent changes now means it will also rule out advertising material in relation to alcohol, gambling and firearms.
“We have a social responsibility and we take our role as connectors of the region very seriously, we want to support the health and wellbeing of our children, young people and wider community members.
Roger Blakeley, Chair of Greater Wellington’s Transport Committee says the changes to the advertising policy have public safety at the forefront.
“It’s vital that public transport remains a safe and inclusive space for the travelling public. We need buses, trains and ferries that reflects our region’s diversity and we cannot diminish the beliefs of our passengers so Council has also agreed that religious or political material will not be promoted,” says Cr Blakeley.
Under its new policy, Metlink will accept advertising for social and community events where the main organiser or promoter is a faith-based organisation.
“Council did recognise the value and importance of community events so we will continue to accept advertising for charitable causes, promotions, activities and events where the intent is to fulfil a charitable purpose rather than the promotion of faith,” says Cr Blakeley.
Alongside advertising across its fleet, Metlink will continue to display the latest COVID-19 messaging from the Government which includes QR contact tracing posters to help passengers record their journeys.