Thousands of Students Call on Ottawa City Council to Keep Transit Affordable

OTTAWA, Nov. 30, 2011 /CNW/ - Students from the Carleton University Students' Association, the Carleton University Graduate Students' Association, the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa and the Graduate Students' Association at the University of Ottawa will present Mayor Watson with more than 10,000 postcards in support of a $145 per semester Universal Transit Pass (U-Pass) Program. The presentation will take place in advance of today's City Council 2012 budget 10:00am vote where a $70 U-Pass fee increase will be considered. Students from la Cite Collegiale and St. Paul's University will also be speaking out against the cancellation of the student annual pass and semester pass.

"More than 10,000 students from Carleton University and the University of Ottawa oppose the proposed $70 fee increase to the U-Pass," stated Chantle Beeso, Vice President Student Issues, Carleton University Students' Association. "We hope that city councillors and Mayor Watson will hear the clear message that students are not willing to pay more for less service."

On November 16, the City's Transit Commission voted unanimously to drastically increase the cost of transit for university and college students around the city by raising the price of the U-Pass by $70 and cancelling the student semester and annual transit pass. The students' unions have created a comprehensive research paper that finds that the increase is a cash grab for OC Transpo, while OC Transpo continues to claim that the new price is 'revenue neutral'. In February, students will vote on whether they wish to pay $360 per year for a U-Pass or to cancel the program.

"Students in Ottawa are already paying the highest transit fares in the country and experienced major service cuts this past September, we simply can't afford to pay more," added Vice President University Affairs of the SFUO, Elizabeth Kessler.

Where:
City Council Chambers
110 Laurier Avenue West
9:30am - 10:00am

SOURCE Carleton University Students' Association

For further information:

Chantle Beeso, Vice President Student Issues
Carleton University Student' Association 
Office 613-520-2600 Ext 1607
Cell 613-277-3189

Elizabeth Kessler, Vice President University Affairs
Student Federation of the University of Ottawa
Office 613-562-5800 Ext 4074
Cell 613-558-5397

*French media release available upon request

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Carleton University Students' Association

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