Should governments fill the Greyhound gap?

NDP leader zerging prime minister Justin Trudeau to develop a funding plan to save Greyhound sing row Trudeau a letter today adding his voice to Western provinces and Indigenous communities who are sounding an alarm about how Greyhounds Cuts will affect people who rely the bus company should Greyhound get some kind of subsidy to stay viable does the government have a role to play or should the FED stay out of it joining me now from Winnipeg is Dan Vandal liberal MP for St Boniface same Fatale in Edmonton conservative Economic Development General and with us from Vancouver is the ndp’s health critic Dawn Davies High to everyone thanks very much for joining us I appreciate it instant communication with the federal government for years to drive home the point that no private sector company can operate this service in those World areas without some kind of assistance why does our government refused the request for help all Canadians were going to be negatively impacted by the unfortunate decision by Greyhound to cut Services we we especially recognize that indigenous this could affect indigenous communities is harder than the other communities there’s many indigenous citizens that use this line for health reasons others use it for employment another Services other reasons to get to two cities so at this point we’re going to just communicate with with indigenous communities First Nation and metis communicate with municipalities with the provinces to try to arrive at options to to to move forward together stop and see where those are those options lead us one of those options the federal government subsidizing the company to keep those routes open from a transfer to a bus company in Thunder Bay that indicated that they were willing to look at the situation to try to to try to provide a service that’s desperately needed I think we need to all communicate better and and were Storage Solutions perhaps There’s an opportunity to to involve one of the indigenous Economic Development agencies as being part of the solution but our government is committed to working with everyone to find a solution well as in that one that single example in Thunder Bay will step up enough to fill the void that’s just being created in western Canada of course I Our Hearts and Thoughts go out to to the many people who will be affected by this decision I too to change and to cancel the other bus routes I within within Rule and Indigenous communities across Canada dance comments are hardly inspiring sets that there’s going to be something done here I you know we received this time and time again we see a government that will will say one thing do another when it comes to to certain things like standing up Canadiens versus this is certainly something that we’re not seeing a previous team or not staying at 2 at this point I’m either the number of their policies and a number of of their things that they’ve done over the past few years that with person comes to mind is is putting on a carbon tax incentive to any company Greyhound is not working anymore because there’s a carbon tax very faintly been looking at a number of the policies of liberal government open place like things like the carbon tax that’s it’s an organization that’s that’s something that that would disincentivize any company for getting involved in and doesn’t and you know seeing that what what decision like that Greyhound has has has made on this is is is especially concerning because it does affect us communities more than the most executive from Greyhound and she never singled out a carbon tax as a reason why they were no longer running the service but in any event Mr Davies I Your Leader party leader wrote to Mr Trudeau today to do something about this do you want to see straight up sensitization something that fall squarely within Federal jurisdiction as a matter of Interventional transportation and has been pointed out it needs to be underscored that you know Tim’s maybe hundreds of thousands of Canadians from British Columbia to Northern Ontario rely on bus services is there means of transportation to access jobs employment Healthcare another essential public services in bitconnect with their families and here in British Columbia we have the the documented fact that the lack of bus services along the highway tears lead to missing and murdered indigenous women who had to rely on hitchhiking because there weren’t any adequate bus services so this is a critical service and and I think that the federal government needs to play a leadership role in adding some form of funding formula to help ensure that this vital public service is available for free Canadiens perspective I think there’s any number of options are available I don’t think the form of of of financial assistance is as important as that commitment itself it can take up to take many forms but what is critic was that we recognize that this is a foundational service for Canadians and I don’t think that is acceptable for the prime minister to deflect this to the provinces and essentially abdicate Federal responsibility not only to the 400 workers who risked losing their jobs Tober but all of those Canadians who stand to lose access to this is vital service in and I’m looking for leadership you know we just saw the federal government purchase a pipeline for 4.5 billion dollars because he said it was in the still interested in their jurisdiction well I think these kind of transportation services are in the National interest and certainly are within Federal jurisdiction so I think it’s strong case can be made for federal leadership including financial assistance options right now but what I don’t get is that how how this is just something that’s that’s happening now I the company said that they they’ve been talking about this since 2004 that they have been extensively in constant communication with the government talking with this eventuality for the last 3 years we saw logging records as just as recent as March and February there was somebody lobbying Transport Canada delivering this message so why is a solution just being looked at now signal to government that they were going to cut Services I think this number of years on those routes two other communities the indigenous communities First Nation inmate either the hounds of The Villages the municipalities to try to find a solution and there’s been company and as I said earlier a company in Thunder Bay that’s just one example of how they make them Ford let’s not forget this entire this entire cut back this entire incident was announced Monday afternoon we are now Wednesday afternoon are you saying you never once thought that this would happen no points in the conversations did the Greyhound ever ever signal that they were going to cut services at completely cut services and that’s an important fact cutbacks were announced Monday afternoon we’re not Wednesday afternoon it’s important that we keep communicating with those communities those townsville’s reserves was making communities to try to find a reasonable option going forward our government is committed to that and we have an open door policy to 2 to look work together to look at options going forward government needs to look at its other policies but you didn’t really answer the question about whether or not they should be entertaining the option of subsidizing Greyhound to get these Services back up and running it’s not perfect but to let seismic do you know I get a government that that seems to have him put in policies and then once once a company like due to the move forward as a private company suddenly they jump in and and and by the by the organization so we’re certainly not not supportive of moving down that path forward but again you know it’s it’s about policy chicken place like things like that department. You just sending out sent from the Prime Minister Baines this week on a huge get to internet in rural Canada as well it did not take into account by the impact that does have and I will count rely on Greyhound to connect them with their families and and in jobs across western Canada and self
MPs Dan Vandal, Matt Jeneroux and Don Davies discuss whether provincial and federal governments should fill the Greyhound gap after the company announced it would be ending service for nearly all routes in Western Canada. To read more:

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