On MorningFile, Rachel hosted Ian Borsuk, Environment Hamilton's Climate Campaign Coordinator to chat about the HSR and details of Tuesday’s Emergency Riders Meeting. Ian discusses how an average of 23 buses were cancelled every day in October with a 19% absentee rate. He notes that this is unacceptable and the system needs to invest more into improving transportation in our city.
He notes that fossil fuel emissions in Hamilton for 2015 rose from single-occupant car emissions, but all other emissions metrics declined. Public transit is at a moment of rejuvenation in many facets but it is more important now than ever before to improve our current systems and give the community the availability to use it before it's too late to reverse environmental harm.
At Tuesday’s meeting, the HSR was in attendance along with ATU107 - the union that runs the HSR - Ward 3 Counsellor Matthew Green and a large group of community stakeholders. He simplifies some of the reasons behind the buses being missed in relation to a few factors that highlight how the system itself had failed. He touches on some reminders for compassion to our drivers, some of which were working overtime last month under extreme circumstances. Topics of Area Rating, Accessibility, Employee Rights, the 10 year Transit Strategy, and Safety on buses were all brought forward. With approval to hire 58 new drivers, it's key to also understand that this is not a complete solution and that these drivers will still need administrative time to be trained and positioned.
While cars on the road are proven to be increasingly high, young people are not a part of that statistic. Young people are driving less in fact so it is important to direct attention to that demographic as the largest users of public transit. Find out details and listen to our full interview below.