Rural passenger rail on life support: HughesThursday, October 04, 2012 by: Donna Hopper
Local passenger rail advocates and supporters are encouraged to watch CTV this evening as rail service in the Algoma region will be highlighted.
Interviews with members of the Coalition for Algoma Passenger Trains (CAPT) will be included in the feature segment which airs during both the 6 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. news broadcasts on CTV.
For more information about CAPT, please click here.
A news release issued today by Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing MP, Carol Hughes, regarding rural Ontario passenger rail follows.
Rural passenger rail on life support: Hughes
Declining services throttles transport options for businesses and public
OTTAWA - The final voyage for the Ontario Northland passenger train was a powerful reminder that the federal government has no commitment to passenger rail in northern and rural Canada, according to Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing MP, Carol Hughes.
Hughes points out that the lack of federal leadership robs the north of an affordable, reliable and environmentally friendly transportation option. She feels it sends the wrong message about doing business in the north.
“It’s limiting for business,” said Hughes. “The ring of fire is set to open up the far north and both the federal and provincial government look short-sighted and unprepared.”
Hughes grilled the government about its lacklustre commitment in Question Period Wednesday.
“It was the Ontario Liberal government that killed the train. But all across Canada this Conservative Government is walking away from crucial railway infrastructure,” said Hughes. “Why are the Conservatives imitating the McGuinty Liberals? Where is their plan for passenger rail in northern and rural Canada?”
Hughes joined federal and provincial New Democrats at a rally to mark the end of Ontario Northland passenger services last Friday in North Bay.
She feels the train will be missed in ways that neither government is thinking about.
“The shame is that this makes little economic sense. The ONR has a strong, positive effect on communities it runs through, said Hughes. “For every job tied directly to rail there is another that exists because of business in the region.”