What do racialized communities and the Scarborough subway have to do with the TTC fare hike?

‘TTC Riders’ speak their minds at TTC board meeting; fares increase by 10 cents

The news at a special TTC board meeting was that fares will increase 10 cents to $3 a token or $146.25 for a Metropass in 2017 (unless you’re paying cash, then you’re paying more anyway but that amount will stay the same at $3.25). Chair Josh Colle brought a motion that included a plan to freeze fares in 2018. Kids (age 12 and under) will continue to ride for free.

A large group that called itself “TTC Riders” met in the rotunda of City Hall (watch our facebook live video) before heading up to the committee. Approximately 80 members of the public with various interests and messages for the committee came to the board meeting.

Rosemary Frei used her deputation time to talk about a Toronto Star article about the Scarborough subway from Oct. 24, 2016, titled “How a bid to resurrect Scarborough LRT was killed: Analysis” by Jennifer Pagliaro. “I’m wondering where the outcry is from commissioners on this mixed-up memo?” Frei asked the board.

Butterfly GoPaul of Jane Finch Action Against Poverty used her deputation time to talk about the importance of transit for her community, and how increases to fares will have the most impact on students and seniors. “What kind of global city are we becoming, only for the elite? … How you figure out the budget is not my concern. I’m a taxpayer. I’m a mom. I have two sons. I have a partner, and I have a community I’m supporting. You guys need to figure out how you’re not breaking the backs of poor racialized communities,” she said, to applause.

“I’m really concerned that it’s mainly white upper-class folks making such an overwhelming decision on racialized communities,” GoPaul said, facing the TTC board comprised of mostly white men (with the exception of Councillor Shelley Carroll and Joanne De Laurentiis).

After the meeting, Chair Colle spoke to her comment. “I mean, she has a point. But that’s also more, I think, the issue is more [for] council,” Colle said. “It’s something we have to be cognizant of, and [in] the latest round of our civic appointments, every name that I put forward or suggested they look at was a woman of colour exactly for that reason. Amazingly qualified… I think at the end of the day, and this is in the corporate world, people are realizing you make better decisions, you have better deliberation when you have a wider range of decision-makers and backgrounds at a table.”