New citizens to receive an exclusive VIA offer through the ICC's
Cultural Access Pass program
TORONTO, July 3, 2012 /CNW Telbec/ - VIA Rail Canada and the Institute
for Canadian Citizenship (ICC) have collaborated to provide new
Canadian citizens, who are members of the ICC's Cultural Access Pass
(CAP) program, with a one-time, exclusive travel offer: a 50 per cent
discount on the lowest available fare, any class, one way or round
trip, no blackout periods, for CAP members and up to four of their
children under the age of 18.
The Cultural Access Pass program fosters inclusion, introducing our
country's newest citizens to Canadian culture and experiences by
providing them (and their children) a year of free access to more than
1,000 Canadian attractions from museums and historic sites to national
and provincial parks (even offering access to volunteer and employment
resources). With an average of almost 100 registrations per day, more
than 50,000 new citizens have become Cultural Access Pass members.
"We are thrilled to join the Institute for Canadian Citizenship to bring
train travel to our newest fellow Canadians," said VIA Rail President
and CEO, Marc Laliberté. "Travelling by train is a truly unique
experience, one that connects travellers with Canada's historical,
cultural and natural beauty. We look forward to welcoming many new
Canadian citizens on board as they discover all of the wonderful
experiences this country has to offer."
VIA Rail's significant travel offer complements the Cultural Access
Pass's ability to engage new Canadian citizens with their country by
discovering many of its remarkable attractions. With services from
Vancouver to Halifax, VIA Rail connects some 450 communities across the
country, giving CAP members plenty of travel experiences to choose
CAP members are an engaged audience, interested in exploring their new
home from coast-to-coast. In a recent ICC survey, 80 per cent expressed
a desire to travel within Canada over the next year, listing their top
Canadian travel destinations as Atlantic Canada, Vancouver, the Rocky
Mountains, Montréal and Ottawa.
"Our relationship with VIA Rail is a dream come true to someone like me
who was once a new Canadian wishing to discover a new country," said
The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, Institute for Canadian
Citizenship's Co-Founder and Co-Chair. "The opportunity it presents for
our Cultural Access Pass members is truly wonderful."
Gillian Hewitt Smith, the ICC's Executive Director & CEO adds: "Now, not
only are we able to open doors to cultural attractions and parks, we
can also provide new citizens with a wonderful way to travel. CAP is
only possible because of organizations like VIA Rail Canada who work to
meaningfully include new citizens in Canadian life."
CAP's ability to welcome and engage new citizens was recognized by the
Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and
Multiculturalism as well as the Honourable Steven Fletcher, Minister of
State (Transport); both announced this exciting offer during Canada Day
celebrations in Canada's Capital Region and Vancouver.
With the vital support of Citizenship and Immigration Canada, the
Cultural Access Pass is introduced to every new Canadian citizen at the
time of their citizenship ceremony (approximately 170,000 people per
year). As the diversity and value of CAP experiences increase, so too
will the pace and rate of new registrations - this year alone, the ICC
estimates an additional 35,000 new members!
CAP is generously supported by the Canadian Museums Association and the
RBC Foundation. Details about the Cultural Access Pass program,
including the list of participating attractions as well as full details
about the VIA Rail Canada offer, can be found here: culturalaccesspass.ca.
ABOUT THE ICC
The Institute for Canadian Citizenship is a national, non-profit
organization that engages Canadians in citizenship through innovative
programs, campaigns and partnerships designed to ensure new citizens
are welcomed and included as equals, to create meaningful connections
among all Canadian citizens, to foster a culture of active, engaged
citizens and to celebrate what it means to be Canadian. Our Building
Citizenship program brings together new and established Canadians at
community citizenship ceremonies; our Cultural Access Pass (CAP) offers
new citizens the chance to visit more than 1,000 attractions across
Canada for free for a full year from the time they're sworn in; and our
annual LaFontaine-Baldwin Symposium fosters a debate on the future of
citizenship and Canada's civic culture. The ICC was founded and is
co-chaired by the Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson and John Ralston
Saul. The ICC is supported by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC).
For more information, visit icc-icc.ca. You can also follow us on Twitter (@ICCICC).
ABOUT VIA RAIL CANADA
As Canada's national rail passenger service, VIA Rail Canada's (viarail.ca) mandate is to provide safe, efficient, environmentally sustainable
passenger transportation, in the country's two official languages.
Every week, VIA operates intercity, regional and transcontinental
trains linking 450 communities across its 12,500-kilometre route
network. Winner of the 2011 RAC Safety Award, VIA transports over four
million passengers annually. Since 2007, the Government of Canada has
provided VIA with nearly one billion dollars in capital investment
funding. Follow the evolution of current projects at viarail.ca/transformingvia. Join the Evolution Blog at viaevolution.ca.
Follow VIA on Twitter @VIA_Rail. Visit VIA on Facebook at facebook.com/viarailcanada.
SOURCE VIA RAIL CANADA INC.
For further information:
Institute for Canadian Citizenship
(416) 593-6998 ext.225
VIA Rail Canada