National Public Transit Strategy Act

Mr. Speaker, I am proud to be a seconder of the bill that the member for Trinity—Spadina has brought forward.

I want to point out that Canada is the only country in the OECD without a national transit policy.

There is one segment of society that I am particularly concerned about that I do not think the member mentioned in her speech, and that is seniors. We have a growing demographic of seniors for whom independence means being able to get around on their own, both safely and securely. For a number of safety reasons, we should not be driving in our senior years.

Would the member like to comment on that aspect of seniors and mass transit?

Ms. Olivia Chow: Mr. Speaker, I was in Whitehorse, Yukon, and met with the mayor there. She started a bus service in Whitehorse, and ridership jumped by 30% or 40% within a few months. She told me that there is a growing need for this service, because as the population ages, fewer people are able to drive.

Whitehorse is a small town, and people coming from other cities cannot reach it because there is just no bus service going into town. As well, parts of Whitehorse are not served by the bus service, because there is just not enough support from the federal government. She would welcome a national public transit strategy.