ATU Local 113

ATU Local 113

September 12, 2007 16:19 ET

ATU Local 113: Toronto Transit Workers' Union Says TTC Fare Increase Punishes the Poor and Will Hurt the Environment

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Sept. 12, 2007) - The head of the union that represents the operating and maintenance workers of the Toronto Transit Commission slammed the 15 cent fare increase passed earlier at a meeting of the Commission as an additional tax on the most vulnerable people in Toronto and a backwards step for the environment.

"It may not seem like much to Councillors and Commissioners making more than $100,000 a year but it's a lot to families who rely on transit to get to work and to school," says Bob Kinnear, President of Amalgamated Transit Union Local 113.

"These people, and everyone else who takes the TTC, is part of the solution to traffic congestion and pollution. They should be rewarded, not punished."

"There's also the additional damage to the environment that got lost in this debate. By the Commission's own figures, this fare increase will result in the loss of six million passengers a year. That's over 16,000 per day. Where are we going to put all those cars? What about the pollution that is spewed out of tailpipes in traffic jams?"

Kinnear rejected arguments that there is not enough money to sustain transit in Toronto at acceptable levels without raising fares.

"There is plenty of money in this province and in this country to support public transit. If Dalton McGuinty can give a million dollars to a cricket club and if Stephen Harper can brag about what a large surplus the federal government has, there has to be money to encourage public transit and do our part to reduce global warming.

"Our members will be the ones that have to enforce these higher fares. Not one of the Commissioners will be there to deliver the bad news personally to passengers. Once again, we will have to take the brunt of the public's anger and frustration. It's the worst part of an Operator's job. I wish the Commissioners would take a front line shift or two in the weeks to come to see firsthand the impact of their decision."

For more information or to arrange interviews, contact Bill Reno, 416-223-7366.

Contact Information

  • Reno Associates
    Bill Reno
    (416) 223-7366