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Petition appeals to federal government to stop transit cuts in Metro Vancouver

FILE: A TransLink bus in downtown Vancouver. (CityNews Vancouver)

An online petition is trying to stop further cuts to transit services in Metro Vancouver

The petition is aimed at the federal government to help

Abundant Transit group argues without funding immediately, impact will last years

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — A grass-roots movement is underway to try to keep transit operating in Metro Vancouver.

Abundant Transit, a self-styled rider advocacy group, is attempting to put pressure on the federal government with a petition┬áto ensure transit services in Metro Vancouver aren’t cut any further during this pandemic.

Mike Soron, head of Abundant Transit, says he launched his campaign in hopes of providing immediate help to keep Translink from cutting back even further.

“We are lazer-focused on this immediate crisis. But all of the decisions we make today are going to have impacts and reverberations for many, many years to come,” he says.

RELATED: TransLink losing $75-million a month as ridership falls during pandemic: sources

Soron argues without an immediate cash injection, the implications will be dire for transit services over the long-term.

“We’re going to be making a future that is much less transit-friendly. And that has huge implications for what our communities look like, for economic justice and equity, for the climate, for air pollution, and public health.”

Losing around $75-million a month without collecting bus fares and drop in ridership, Translink has warned of further cuts if it can’t secure immediate financing.

RELATED: TransLink seeks emergency funding amid massive monthly losses

The Metro Vancouver’s Mayor’s Council is also pleading for emergency help from the federal and provincial governments, both of which suggested funding for local transit services during this pandemic was not on their radars.

As of Wednesday evening, nearly 900 people signed the petition.