“We applaud the initiative and will work with all partners who wish to carry out the project.”
The union representing bus drivers with the Société de transport de Montréal applauds the introduction of an NDP private member’s bill (C-531) aimed at amending the Criminal Code to provide for more severe penalties for assaults committed against public transit workers. Tabled June 16 in the House of Commons, the bill is in response to public calls by the union following a savage assault on a bus driver last April 24.
“We applaud the initiative and will work with all partners who wish to carry out the project. NDP MP John Rafferty channeled demands from many cities aimed at better protection for public transit workers,” explained Stéphane Lachance, union spokesperson. “We hope that such a law will act as a deterrent and that we shall witness a significant decrease in assaults along our transit network.”
In 2012, 66 violent acts were recorded against City of Montréal bus drivers. According to health and safety experts, only 25 per cent of such acts are reported.
“As early as next week, we will begin a public and political awareness campaign on the issue. Public transit workers are called upon to ensure the safety of passengers, pedestrians, motorists and cyclists. It is self-evident that their own safety must be ensured,” Lachance concluded.