Photo: Marc Bruxelle | Dreamstime
Last night I spoke at a protest calling for free public transit in Montreal and beyond. Free public transit is one of the best ways to fight climate change and social inequality.
Free transit is an economic policy that is designed to increase transit ridership by making it more competitive with private vehicles. It rewards people for making environmentally friendly choices. It gives people that extra financial incentive to leave their cars at home or to get rid of their cars altogether. It is a policy that will reduce the number of private vehicles on the road which is a plus for the environmnet, our health and our cities.
Free transit is also a social justice policy. It ensures that everyone is free to move around the city as they wish. Monthly transit passes or even tickets are a huge burden on family budgets and many low-income individuals are forces to ride without paying, which can lead to hefty fines and harassment from the police.
The Green Party of Quebec has made free public transit one of our top priorities over the past few years. Although there has always been a lot of support for this policy, last night was the first time I saw people marching in the streets demanding it. It is great to see that this idea is gaining traction and that there is a growing movement behind this progressive policy.
Going forward the Green Party of Quebec will continue advocating for free public transit across the land.
Leader of the Green Party of Quebec