Fare-strikers, who are dodging fares to protest MBTA fare hikes, are acting against their own interests, Transportation Secretary Richard Davey told the State House News Service Wednesday.
"It’s counter-productive… We just raised fares because the T is trying to balance its budget," Davey said.
The Boston Fare Strike group is against the fare increases, and has publicized methods to avoid paying fares and has held doors open so that people can get into subway stations for free.
The fare hikes, which raised fares an average of 23 percent, went into effect on July 1, and the fare strikes followed soon thereafter.
"We need their voices not their fare evasion," said Davey, who said he appreciated the passion but not the tactic, which he said is “ultimately counterproductive to our trying to balance the T’s budget."
The MBTA raised fares to help bridge a roughly $160 million budget deficit. As part of a bailout bill to help make up the balance of that deficit, the Legislature increased fines for fare evasion.
Davey also had a simpler message for fare evaders. "Don’t do it. It’s against the law," he said.