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October 2017

Do City’s leaders really care about TTLs? Or Taxis?

To the editor,

Follow the money. With an estimated $6.7 million flowing into the City’s coffers annually from Uber - a number that no doubt will climb over time, the bean counters at City Hall are surely salivating, particularly seeing as the cost to regulate Uber is virtually nil. In light of such a healthy revenue stream, the taxi industry is rapidly becoming irrelevant as far as Monsieur Tory & Company are concerned.

Don’t hold your breath waiting for City monies derived from Uber to be directed towards the TTL program - not as long as there are those willing to assume the costs of operating an accessible cab.

Peter D. Pellier

Annual Eid Prayer at Dentonia Park welcomes thousands

To the editor,

On Friday, September 1st, 2017, we held an Eid Prayer at Dentonia Park. It was organized by Danforth Islamic Centre. Thousands and thousands of people showed up. It started at 9:30 a.m. and in the opening Mohammed Mirza, Chief Coordinator/Event Commander of Eid Prayer, introduced the event to the public by giving a short speech, followed by Helal Chowdary and Moderated by Washim Ahmed.

After this awards were presented to the event’s honoured guests. All awarded guests gave a short speech. Mr. Nathanial Smith read a message from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, to thank the organizers (Danforth Islamic Centre) of this amazing event and to wish all in attendance a peaceful Eid al-Adha.

Recipients of special awards of appreciation are listed below. The awards recognize their distinguished service and support to the Danforth Islamic Center and the Muslim Communities Of Toronto, Ontario, and Canada.

John Tory, Mayor of Toronto; Bill Blair, Member of Parliament (Scarborough Southwest); Nathaniel Erskine-Smith, Member of Parliament (Beaches-East York); Arthur Potts, Member of  Provincial Parliament (Beaches-East York); Janet Davis, City Councillor, Ward 31 Beaches- East York.

Mohammed Mirza

Toronto could learn from principled stands other jurisdictions are taking against Uber

To the editor,

(Editor’s note: The following is a press release issued by the iTaxiworkers Association on September 26, 2017.)

In response to the Government of Quebec’s new terms and conditions governing the Private Transportation Company (PTC) Uber’s pilot project extension, iTaxiworkers Association applauds the efforts of Transportation Minister Laurent Lessard to enhance public safety across the taxi industry in that Province.

“Currently, in the City of Toronto, elected officials do not have the same level of regard for the protection of Torontonians who utilize the PTC Uber,” says Sajid Mughal, President of iTaxiworkers Association. “From its inception in the Toronto market, Mayor John Tory’s lack of regard for law and order, and public safety, has paved the way for Uber to diminish the historical standards designed to protect users of taxi services. This is particularly disturbing when we live in an age where municipal governance should enhance protection of the public, not detract from it.”

Earlier this year in Denmark, when faced with regulatory measures designed to promote public safety such as mandatory fare meters and seat occupancy detectors for air bag activation, Uber ceased operations. London England said it would not renew Uber’s operating license that expires later this month because it is not ‘fit and proper’ to continue to do business, citing failure to report serious offences. The Government of Quebec’s proposed terms, to require 35 hours of training, in addition to background checks performed by Police Services and not third parties, has Uber Quebec in an uproar, but would be welcomed in Toronto’s taxi industry.

“In July 2016, Toronto City Councillors eliminated the training of all taxi drivers as a concession to the PTC Uber, while allowing this corporation to provide ride-sharing services without vital public safety measures such as cameras” states Mughal. “It is time for those elected officials to initiate regulatory measures to restore the public’s confidence in governance at Toronto City Hall, as it is undemocratic to have two sets of laws and regulations over one system of public transportation.”

Is Uber’s threat to pull out of Quebec another ploy?

To the editor,

It will be interesting to see how Uber’s battle with the Province of Quebec pans out. Bear in mind, the Quebec government is far more involved in the regulation of cabs than here in Ontario, where each municipality assumes that responsibility. Given both Toronto and Mississauga have scrapped training programs for new drivers, as well as mandatory vehicle inspections; given Queen’s Park has remained silent since Uber entered the market, I cannot see a similar initiative unfolding here.

Will Uber really pull out of Quebec, or is this yet another ploy by Uber aimed at getting their clients to lobby the government to back off?

If Uber does withdraw its services in La Belle Province on a permanent basis, without putting up a legal battle - something I doubt very much - this opens the door for those of us operating in the GTHA. Then again, will Mayors John Tory or Bonnie Crombie change their tune regarding Uber, regardless of what happens in Quebec? It seems hard to believe.

Peter D. Pellier

 

2017 Taxi News

Is Uber’s threat to pull out of Quebec another ploy?

Toronto could learn from principled stands other jurisdictions are taking against Uber

Annual Eid Prayer at Dentonia Park welcomes thousands

Do City’s leaders really care about TTLs? Or Taxis?

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