The Ontario Liberals are privatizing your public transit,
but there’s still time to stop them and Keep Transit Public!

How is this happening?

Metrolinx – the provincial transit planning organization – is working with the City of Toronto and the TTC to build several new LRT projects in the area. This is great and we applaud them.

What you may not realize is that your public transit company, The Toronto Transit Commission, will operate the new LRT, but a private company will maintain it. With its long, proud history of maintaining street rail, Toronto is best placed to keep those well-paid, union jobs in the public realm. Yet Metrolinx and the province are pursuing an aggressive agenda of privatization.

What gives?

Transit works best when it is publicly owned, operated and maintained. We’ve seen so many examples from around Canada and the world of what happens when private companies are left to maintain public transit. They try to squeeze profits any way they can by raising fares, reducing service and cutting corners on maintenance. Private transit has proven to be more costly and less safe.

In other Municipalities around the GTA, Like Waterloo, Hamilton, and Mississauga, Metrolinx has sought almost exclusively to hire a consortia of companies to Finance, Design, Build, Operate and Maintain. (FDBOM).

Because public transit companies don’t Finance, Design or Build, they are ineligible to compete in the tendering process, and are out of the running to Operate and Maintain new transit. This effectively means that only large groups of private companies may even bid on these projects. The current procurement process leaves the door open to all new transit in Ontario being entirely privatized.

However, IT’S NOT TOO LATE. If you take action now, we can pressure Metrolinx and the Provincial Liberal Government to make the TTC the default maintenance provider of any new transit projects that get built in our city.

What you can do:

1. Sign the Petition
Signing the petition will automatically send emails to all MPPs and confirmed candidates in Toronto, as well as Metrolinx, the Ministry of Transportation, Infrastructure Ontario, and Premier Wynne’s office.

2. Contact your local constituents directly!

Riding Party Name Email
Toronto
Ectobicoke North Liberal Shafiq Qaadri info@voteqaadri.ca
Ectobicoke North PC Doug Ford doug@fordnation.ca
Ectobicoke North NDP Mahamud Amin mahamud.amin@ontariondp.ca
Ectobicoke Centre Liberal Yvan Baker contactyvanbaker@gmail.com
Ectobicoke Centre PC Kinga Surma info@kingasurma.com
Ectobicoke Centre NDP Erica Kelly erica.kelly@ontariondp.ca
Ectobicoke-Lakeshore Liberal Peter Milczyn info@votepetermilczyn.ca
Ectobicoke-Lakeshore PC Christine Hogarth christine.hogarth@ontariopc.net
Ectobicoke-Lakeshore NDP Phil Trotter phil.trotter@ontariondp.ca
Humber River-Blackcreek Liberal Deanna Srgo vote@vote-sgro.com
Humber River-Blackcreek PC Cyma Musarat
Humber River-Blackcreek NDP Tom Rakocevic tom.rakocevic@ontariondp.ca
York South-Weston Liberal Laura Albanese info@votealbanese.ca
York South-Weston PC Mark DeMontis markdemontis@gmail.com
York South-Weston NDP Faisal Hassan faisal.hassan@ontariondp.ca
Parkdale-High Park Liberal Nadia Guerrerra nadia@nadiaguerrera.ca
Parkdale-High Park PC Adam Pham phamtastic90@gmail.com
Parkdale-High Park NDP Bhutila Karpoche bhutila.karpoche@ontariondp.ca
York Centre Liberal Ramon Estaris carey@voteramon.ca
York Centre PC Roman Barber info@romanbaber.ca
York Centre NDP Andrea Vasquez Ramirez andrea.vasquezjimenez@ontariondp.ca
Eglington-Lawrence Liberal Michael Colle mikecolle2018@gmail.com
Eglington-Lawrence PC Robin Martin robin@robinmartin.ca
Eglington-Lawrence NDP Robyn Vilde robyn.vilde@ontariondp.ca
Davenport Liberal Cristina Martins info@votecristinamartins.ca
Davenport PC Federico Sanchez vote4fed@fedsanchez.com
Davenport NDP Marit Stiles marit.stiles@ontariondp.ca
Toronto-St. Paul’s Liberal Jess Spindler votespindler@gmail.com
Toronto-St. Paul’s PC Andrew Kirsch votekirsch@gmail.com
Toronto-St. Paul’s NDP Jill Andrews jill.andrews@ontariondp.ca
University-Rosedale Liberal Jo-Ann Davis votejoanndavis@gmail.com
University-Rosedale PC Gillian Smith outreach@gilliansmith.ca
University-Rosedale NDP Jessica Bell jessica.bell@ontariondp.ca
Spadina-Fort York Liberal Han Dong votehandong@gmail.com
Spadina-Fort York PC Iris Yu @irisyu Twitter DM
Spadina-Fort York NDP Chris Glover chris.glover@ontariondp.ca
Willowdale Liberal David Zimmer willowdalezimmer@gmail.com
Willowdale PC Stan Cho stan@stancho.ca
Willowdale NDP Saman Tabasinejad saman.tabasinejad@ontariondp.ca
Toronto Centre Liberal David Morris info@david4torontocentre.ca
Toronto Centre PC Meredith Cartwright
Toronto Centre NDP Suze Morrison sure.morrison@ontariondp.ca
Toronto Danforth Liberal Li Koo communications@likoo.ca
Toronto Danforth PC Patricia Kalligosfyris patriciakalligosfyris@gmail.com
Toronto Danforth NDP Peter Tabuns peter.tabuns@ontariondp.ca
Don Valley North Liberal Shelley Carroll shelleycarroll@ontarioliberal.ca
Don Valley North PC Vincent Ke Info@VincentKe.com
Don Valley North NDP Akil Sadikali akil.sadikali@ontariondp.ca
Don Valley West Liberal Kathleen Wynne info@kathleenwynne.ca
info@ontarioliberal.ca
Don Valley West PC Jon Kieran info@jonkieran.ca
Don Valley West NDP Amara Possain amara.possain@ontariondp.ca
Don Valley East Liberal Michael Coteau info@michaelcoteau.com
Don Valley East PC Denzil Minan-Wong support@votedenzil.com
Don Valley East NDP Khalid Ahmed khalid.ahmed@ontariondp.ca
Beaches East York Liberal Arthur Potts info@votearthur.ca
Beaches East York PC Sarah Mallo sarah@sarahmallo.ca
Beaches East York NDP Rima Berns-McGown rima.bernsmcgown@ontariondp.ca
Scarborough-Agincourt Liberal Soo Wong info@votesoowong.com
Scarborough-Agincourt PC Aris Babikian aris.nomination@gmail.com
Scarborough-Agincourt NDP Tasleem Riaz tasleem.riaz@ontariondp.ca
Scarborough Centre Liberal Mazhar Shafiq info@mazharshafiq.ca
Scarborough Centre PC Christina Mitas christina.mitas@ontariopc.com
Scarborough Centre NDP Zeyd Bismilla zeyd.bismilla@ontariondp.ca
Scarborough-Southwest Liberal Lorenzo Benrnardetti info@votelorenzo.ca
Scarborough-Southwest PC Gary Ellis garyellispc@rogers.com
Scarborough-Southwest NDP Doly Begum holy.begum@ontariondp.ca
Scarborough North Liberal Chin Lee info@chinlee.ca
Scarborough North PC Raymond Cho
Scarborough North NDP Dwayne Morgan dwayne.morgan@ontariondp.ca
Scarborough- Rouge Park Liberal Sumi Shan info@sumishan.ca
Scarborough- Rouge Park PC Vijay Thanigasalam info@vijaythani.ca
Scarborough- Rouge Park NDP Felicia Samuel felicia.samuel@ontariondp.ca
Scarborough-Guildwood Liberal Mitzie Hunter scarboroughguildwood@gmail.com
Scarborough-Guildwood PC Roshan Nallaratam
Scarborough-Guildwood NDP Tom Packwood tom.packwood@ontariondp.ca

Sign the Petition!

Keep Transit Publically owned and operated in Toronto

Dear honourable City Councillors, MPPs, and Madam Premier

**your signature**

3,190 signatures = 128% of goal
0
2,500

Share this with your friends:

   

Latest Signatures
3,190 Dean Pulfer Scarborough, Ont. Nov 11, 2018
3,189 Lloyd Marion Etobicoke, Ontario Nov 09, 2018
3,188 George Lapadat Etobicoke, ON Nov 09, 2018
3,187 Meena Marcos Toronto, Ontario Nov 09, 2018
3,186 Margaret Schmidt Scarborough , Ontario Nov 06, 2018
3,185 matt smith toronto, ontario Oct 29, 2018
3,184 A Patel Toronto, Ontario Oct 28, 2018
3,183 Bon Lockrey Oct 15, 2018
3,182 Houuseni Sylla Toronto, Ontario Oct 07, 2018
3,181 charlie white Toronto , ontario Sep 26, 2018
3,180 Joseph Suniga Toronto, Ontario Sep 23, 2018
3,179 Eric Schnell Toronto, Ontario Sep 22, 2018
3,178 Lynzee Freeman Scarborough , Ontario Sep 09, 2018
3,177 George Stamatakos Scarborough, On Sep 06, 2018
3,176 Marco Rodriguez Sep 06, 2018
3,175 Camila Granados Toronto, ON Sep 05, 2018
3,174 Keino Thomas Sep 05, 2018
3,173 Jeffery Presutti Sep 05, 2018
3,172 Haymant Persaud Scarborough , Ontario Sep 05, 2018
3,171 Jennifer Presutti Toronto, On Sep 05, 2018
3,170 Marco Baldassarra Ajax, Ont Sep 05, 2018
3,169 Tommy Humphreys Sep 05, 2018
3,168 Mark Couvillon Ajax, ON Sep 05, 2018
3,167 Mark Couvillon Ajax, ON Sep 05, 2018
3,166 Sheldon Gibbs Scarborough , ON Sep 04, 2018
3,165 John Bolton Sep 02, 2018
3,164 Matt Bolton Sep 02, 2018
3,163 Debbie Murphy Hamilton, Ontario Sep 01, 2018
3,162 Alvin Paul Mississauga, ON Sep 01, 2018
3,161 Jeffrey Sampson Toronto, Ontario Sep 01, 2018
3,160 Julian Perera Oshawa , Ontario Sep 01, 2018
3,159 varun lekhi Brampton, Ontario Sep 01, 2018
3,158 John iannucci Maple, Ontario Sep 01, 2018
3,157 Cameron Baxter Peterborough, Ontario Sep 01, 2018
3,156 Mara Bender Aug 20, 2018
3,155 Nargis Balita TORONTO, ON Aug 11, 2018
3,154 Karly McCrone North York, ON Jul 17, 2018
3,153 Philip Monahan Toronto, ON Jul 13, 2018
3,152 Jason Nimmo Sutton, Ontario Jul 10, 2018
3,151 Thinesh Mahavan Jul 07, 2018
3,150 Sharon Santhakumar Jul 07, 2018
3,149 Ellen Cunningham Scarborough, Ontario Jul 06, 2018
3,148 Donald Temple Scarborough, Ontario Jun 22, 2018
3,147 Krzysztof Marjuszycz Toronto, Ontario Jun 12, 2018
3,146 Oliver Mills Jun 11, 2018
3,145 Brandon Stevens Toronto, ON Jun 09, 2018
3,144 JENNIFER Johns North York, Ontario Jun 09, 2018
3,143 Claudia Miguel Toronto, Ontario Jun 08, 2018
3,142 Fatima Oliveira Jun 08, 2018
3,141 Christopher Veiga Toronto, Ontario Jun 08, 2018

Quick Facts:
What you Need to Know

What:

Kathleen Wynne’s provincial Liberal government is privatizing your public transit. If you don’t act now, all new transit in Ontario will be built with Public-Private Partnerships (P3s) with a private company operating and maintaining your transit.

We all know how the privatization of Hydro went. Higher rates and we’re still holding the bag with the debt. Let’s not make the same mistake again.

And we have transit-specific examples from across Canada and around the world. It's consistently a bad deal for riders, a bad deal for municipalities, and a bad deal for workers.

How:

How did we get here? An ideology of selling public assets for short term gain, leaving the public with a legacy of pain.

Metrolinx, the provincial arm’s length transit planning organization, is only accepting bids from companies that can supply ALL components of the new transit builds.

The components of a bid are: Finance, Design, Build, Operate and Maintain. (FDBOM)

Because public transit companies don't Finance, Design or Build, they are ineligible to compete in the tendering process, and are out of the running to Operate and Maintain these projects. This effectively means that only large consortia of private companies may even bid on the project. The current procurement process leaves the door open to all new transit being entirely privatized.

Why:

Why have more than one transit operator in your city? That doesn’t make any sense.

Public infrastructure is big money. Privatizing transit infrastructure is a shell game, allowing governments to keep debt off the books, but taxpayers end up paying anyway. At a time of record low interest rates, no private company will be able to borrow at the same rates as the government and we will all have to pay those higher rates in our taxes and our transit fares for decades to come.

The proof is in the pudding. Take a look at the London Underground and British Rail privatization train wreck. The infrastructure was privatized and it was such a failure that the government had to bail them out and take it over again.

When:

When Metrolinx builds a new transit project, they first release a Request for Qualifications, in which interested companies put their names in the hat. Metrolinx reviews these applicants for their qualifications and then releases a shortlist of companies that are allowed to bid.

Next, Metrolinx will put out a formal Request for Proposals to the shortlisted companies.

The issue is that any interested party has to commit to financing, designing, building, operating, and maintaining the project. Your local transit agency isn’t in much of a position to be able to finance, design or build such a project, but should be in the running to operate and maintain it. This is would be a step towards to keeping this new transit project publically owned and operated.

However, it’s not too late. Metrolinx's procurement policy is driven by privatization ideology fed down the chain from the provincial Liberal government. In many cases, it's not too late.

In Hamilton, our campaign drew over 6000 signatures to our petition, calling on Hamiton City Council to request that the local transit company, HSR, operate and maintain the new LRT line. Flooded with calls and emails, council votes 10-2 in favour of our motion!

It's never too late to demand quality public services.

Let’s keep our transit jobs local. Let’s keep transit owned by all of us and not by private companies.

Who:

How Metrolinx decides who gets to operate and maintain transit will affect everyone living in the GTHA and Niagara regions. If the public raises its voice demanding that transit operation and maintenance be publicly owned, it can happen. If awareness remains low, it’s possible that the Liberal government will award your transit to an international private company driven by a profit motive.

Where:

Transit privatization is happening all over Ontario with almost no awareness in the general public.

With your help, we can stop the privatization train wreck.

Campaign FAQ

Why is the operation and maintenance of new transit up for bidding?

The Provincial Liberal Government, through its transit agency, Metrolinx, has decided that it doesn’t want the people of Ontario to operate and maintain their new transit. Instead, it would rather ask big private companies to come in and run the core of your city's transit system. They hope that private companies from elsewhere will be able to understand the transit needs of your city better than the people who have operated transit there for decades and longer.

What is a Public-Private Partnership (P3)?

P3s come in many forms, but put simply, they are deals where the government signs a contract with a private company or consortium to build and operate a piece of infrastructure or a service on the government’s behalf. In exchange, the government promises them a healthy guaranteed profit over the decades to follow.

Why is our transit even being considered for privatization? Isn’t transit a public service?

The great promise of public-private partnerships is reduced risk, because the private partner promises to deliver the project for a fixed price and to pay penalties if they fall behind schedule. It sounds great in theory. In practice, when private projects’ costs increase, the private partners often simply walk away if they aren’t going to make any money on the deal anymore.

That’s exactly what happened with the London Underground P3. Then the public is left to clean up the mess. Likewise, even though they may promise to pay penalties if they’re late, when the time comes they will threaten to walk away from these deals and throw the project into chaos if the government forces them to actually pay them. These companies spend millions on lawyers who know exactly how to draw up a contract that’s “heads we win, tails you lose.” Look at the TTC, which is finding it impossible to cancel its contract for streetcars with Bombardier even though the deliveries are years late.

 

What has happened when transit has been privatized in other areas?

The British government decided to privatize its rail infrastructure and the result was a disaster. The privatized infrastructure company, Railtrack, cut back dramatically on maintenance to keep its profits flowing. The number of delays and accidents soared.

Eventually, the problems got so bad that they went bankrupt and the government was forced to renationalize the system. In London, the government signed a deal with two private consortia to modernize their subway, the historic London Underground.

The private companies promised a fantastic deal in their bids, but unsurprisingly they couldn’t keep their promises. As the companies realized that they weren’t going to make any money because they had under-bid and they experienced delays and cost overruns, they just walked away.

Once again, the public was left to pick up the pieces.

When everything goes great, private companies will still demand a healthy profit that comes out of taxpayers’ or riders’ pockets. When things go badly, the private companies walk away and leave the public holding the bag.

Does service improve?

Privatization does nothing to improve service. In fact, the private partner may have a strong incentive to cut back on service levels in order to increase its profits. Worse, if the city decides that it wants to improve transit service in the future, it could require renegotiating the contract. In that case, the private partner will no doubt demand a hefty subsidy.

Keeping transit public, by contrast, means that service levels are entirely up to the community and not a private company.

Does it result in better jobs?

Private transit operators consistently have higher worker turnover than public agencies. This means that workers can’t build up the skill and experience they acquire over a long career, making transit less efficient and less safe.

Is it safer?

When Britain privatized its rail infrastructure, its accident rates soared. Any private company is going to be tempted to cut back on maintenance to maintain its quarterly profits. It might not cause a problem in the short term but in the long term, it makes a transit system less safe.

Does it cost less?

In most cases, no. But even when it does, cost reductions always have to come from somewhere, whether it's skimping on maintenance, running trains less often, or paying workers less than a living wage. On top of that, private companies need to include their profits, which means an added cost that doesn't exist when transit is publicly operated. Companies often offer very low bids and promise the world to win a contract. But as soon as they run into trouble meeting their promises, they drop the contract and leave the public holding the bag.

The auditor general has said that paying a private consortium to borrow money rather than borrowing it directly has cost the Waterloo Region LRT, which is the prototype for others in the area, an extra $48 million.

You’re just a union worried about losing members, right?

We are transit workers because we believe in the service we provide to citizens. At the heart of it, we benefit when transit service is good for riders. When the frequency of trains gets cut, when safety is compromised, and when the transit agency can't retain its most experienced operators, riders suffer just as much as workers.

We are also concerned about protecting good, living-wage paying jobs in our city. When a private company comes in, they automatically try to cut wages and benefits in order to make a profit.

We believe that everyone in Ontario deserves the opportunity to earn a living wage and provide for their families.

What can I do to help?

Join the movement to Keep Transit Public!

In Hamilton, our campaign gathered over 6000 signatures for our petition. We flooded Hamilton City Councillors with emails and phone calls and the pressure worked. In August, Council passed a motion demanding that Hamilton's new LRT line be run by its existing transit company, the HSR.

The battle isn't over yet. Metrolinx and the province have yet to respond and are months late putting an RFP out.

It's clear we're having an impact.

Now we expand the fight to Toronto, Brampton, Mississauga, St. Catharines and the Niagara Region - all areas with Metrolinx transit projects in various states of progress.

Sign the petition, join us on social media, and join us out in the streets, talking to the public about why we should Keep Transit Public.