Future of Free Pass for People with Vision Loss Still Not Clear as Toronto Votes in Low Income Transit Pass


December 2, 2016, TORONTO – The Toronto Mayor's Executive Committee voted unanimously last night to bring in a low income transit pass for the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC). Called the Fair Pass Program, it still must be passed by City Council. The plan will be debated at City Council's meeting December 13 and 14, when Council will be attempting to identify options to increase revenue and reduce costs in an effort to balance the TTC's budget.

CNIB is watching this issue closely and will be attending the City Council meeting. "We have asked to address Council and will be demanding that the Fair Pass Program not be paid for by cutting the current free pass program for people with vision loss," said Angela Bonfanti, Executive Director, CNIB for the Greater Toronto Area.

The program provides free passes to approximately 3,000 people who are legally blind. Half of working-aged Canadians with vision loss struggle to make ends meet on annual incomes of $20,000 or less.

"We must avoid any decision which results in people who are already marginalized being deprived of their independence and inclusion in society. TTC and the City need to work with stakeholders, like CNIB, to identify solutions that incorporate the needs of our clients," said Bonfanti.

About CNIB
CNIB is a registered charity, passionately providing community-based support, knowledge and a national voice to ensure Canadians who are blind or partially sighted have the confidence, skills and opportunities to fully participate in life. To learn more, visit www.cnib.ca/ontario or call the toll-free CNIB Contact Centre at 1-800-563-2642.

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For more information, please contact:
Kat Clarke
Specialist, Advocacy & Community Impact
416-486-2500 ext. 7651

For media enquiries, please contact:
Shannon Simpson
Manager, Communications
CNIB Ontario
1-888-233-1232 ext. 5147

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