Poverty activists concerned by Kitchener bus route cancellation

March 28, 2014

The Route 18 bus stops directly across from House of Friendship's food hamper pickup location on Guelph Street. Service will end April 28.

"This is a situation where basically the poor don't count," said Oz Cole-Arnal of the Alliance Against Poverty.

He said hiring a taxi or walking any distance with the heavy hampers aren't feasible options.

The group will be. at the Charles Street bus terminal on Friday from 3 to 4:30 p.m. to gather signatures on a petition demanding that bus service to the program be maintained.

Read the full article in The Record: Poverty activists concerned by Kitchener bus route cancellation

Read the University of Waterloo's IMPRINT article: Bus route facing the axe affects low income residents

Thank you to members of Alliance Against Poverty, Poverty Makes Us Sick, Grand River Indigenous Solidarity, Kitchener-Waterloo Solidarity Network and other allies who came out to make this rally successful. We have now collected close to 150 signatures for our petition to save bus access to the emergency food hamper program.
 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE –

 Local Anti-Poverty Group Declares Opposition to Bus Service Cancellation

 Local Anti-Poverty Group Releases Statement Opposing Proposed Cancellation of Bus Route Enabling Low Income KW Residents to Reach Emergency Food Hamper Program

  

To Whom it May Concern,

 Kitchener-Waterloo, ON  - The Alliance Against Poverty (AAP) is today releasing a declaration opposing the plan to cancel some long established and necessary bus routes. On April 28, 2014, Grand River Transit intends to eliminate bus service to a large section of the existing Route 18, including the section of Guelph Street, East of Lancaster, where the emergency food hamper program is operated by the House of Friendship. Thousands of low-income KW residents including the unemployed, the working poor, new immigrants, refugees and those relying on Ontario Works and the Ontario Disability Support Program, rely on the emergency food hamper to feed themselves and their families; the majority do not own cars and rely solely on bus service to get to and from the Guelph Street location.

 The most vulnerable members of KW should not be the target of increased “efficiencies.” We are inviting other organizations from the Region to sign on to the declaration and support our efforts to maintain this bus service.

 Please visit our website (www.allianceagainstpoverty.com) for more information. Call the Grand River Transit Customer Service line at 519-585-7555, and ask to speak to a GRT Manager, to state your opposition to the elimination of this important bus route. Call or e-mail Waterloo Regional Council (519-575-4400 / regionalinquiries@regionofwaterloo.ca ) to state your concerns to your regional councillor. Contact your MPP to demand that this vital Route 18 service to the emergency food hamper program be maintained.

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