Monday, January 28, 2013

Ontario Cyclists- Speak up for your streets! One day to go!

Natalie Boustead, from the About Face Collective

Hey, Rob Ford may still be at Toronto City Hall, but in remembering he is only one man in a large democracy, lets all take the time to participate in this call to action by Cycle Toronto. If we can get the provincial government on board backing better cycling infrastructure, then the Fords anti-cycling slant gets CRUSHED. Let's do this- now! Deadline is Tuesday, January 29th, 2013!

Cycle Toronto LogoOn Nov 30, 2012, the Ministry of Transportation (MTO) released its Draft Cycling Strategy. It's the first provincial bike policy update in 20 years! We're encouraged to see the provincial government taking action to improve cycling infrastructure and better educate all road users.

The Draft Cycling Strategy is a response in large part to the Coroner's Review of Provincial Cycling Deaths released in June 2012. The MTO is reviewing the Coroner's recommendations and we need you to tell them how important a provincial Complete Streets policy and lowered speed limits are to you. We need a specific funding commitment with realistic and achievable timelines. We also want the MTO to focus on helmet promotion rather than mandatory helmets, create a new definition for e-bikes, adopt the one-metre rule and make sideguards mandatory for heavy trucks.

Action Alert: Tell the MTO that you want safer streets! We encourage you to:

1) Read our 22 recommendations
2) Submit feedback directly to the MTO before this Tues Jan 29

The Strategy signals a growing recognition by the Province of the role cycling plays in easing congestion, achieving daily requirements for physical activity, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing economic development opportunities. This is our opportunity to influence its development. Submit your comments before Tuesday!

Cycle Toronto’s on-going advocacy efforts aren't possible without you. Renew your membership or make a donation today to support our work.

Ride safely,

Jared Kolb
Director of Campaigns & Membership

Also, if you missed it, Ontario Physicians are calling for more bike lanes, STAT. Last year I attended the Ontario Cycling Summit in Toronto, which was sponsored by many levels of government, including Health Canada. In a presentation, I was stunned as I watched a presentation on Ontario's projected healthcare costs due to sedentary lifestyle diseases such as diabetes and stroke, which are set to explode within 15 years. In a cartoon the upward red line would have broken through the page and shattered the ceiling. It's going to be not only a lifestyle epidemic, but a health care crisis due to straining of funds. So if you are trying to convince people to support cycling infrastructure, tell them Doctors and Economists are calling for this due to the very real possibility that car-culture is going to bankrupt this province by 2030. So Mr. Ford, since you claim to want to run this city like a business, I suggest you act like a CFO and do something about the fiscal future of your Province and City- now.

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