Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act Alliance Update
United for a Barrier-Free Ontario for All People with Disabilities
Hurry! Sign Up to Tell the Toronto Accessibility Advisory Committee THIS MONDAY to Strongly Oppose Toronto Allowing Electric Scooters That Endanger Vulnerable People with Disabilities, Seniors, and Others
February 2, 2024
Act fast! Email the Toronto Accessibility Advisory Committee now! Ask for a chance to tell the Toronto Accessibility Advisory Committee that they should continue to strongly oppose Toronto allowing electric scooters (“e-scooters”). The Toronto Accessibility Advisory Committee has this topic on its agenda for its meeting this Monday, February 5, 2024, starting in the morning, so you need to act fast. You can present virtually. They only give you five minutes to speak, so it is easy to do.
If you want to get a chance to speak to the Toronto Accessibility Advisory Committee at this meeting, write firstname.lastname@example.org If you prefer, you can just email written comments to that email address. However, speaking at the meeting this Monday is more effective.
The agenda item you would be addressing is Item D15.1 – Micromobility.
The AODA Alliance is calling for Toronto to keep in place the ban on riding e-scooters in public. We also call on Toronto to start to effectively enforce that ban.
E-scooters, a silent menace, endanger public safety in places allowing them. Riders and innocent pedestrians get seriously injured or killed. They especially endanger vulnerable seniors and people with disabilities.
Blind people don’t know when silent e-scooters rocket at them at over 20 KPH, driven by unlicensed, untrained, uninsured, unhelmetted, fun-seeking joyriders. Often left strewn on sidewalks, e-scooters are dangerous tripping hazards for blind people and accessibility nightmares for wheelchair users.
Making this worse, Toronto is continuing to build bike paths on sidewalks. This too endangers people with disabilities. If e-scooters were allowed on bike paths, that means Toronto would be allowing them on those terrible sidewalk bike paths. Check out the widely viewed AODA Alliance video that shows why it is so dangerous for people with disabilities to have bike paths built on sidewalks, available at: https://youtu.be/tJuF8-EbOME
We support the idea of micromobility, but this does not mean that we need to allow e-scooters. Bicycles are a form of micromobility. They fully meet our needs. E-scooters add no additional benefit, beyond the benefit of having bikes.
In 2020 and 2021, the Toronto Accessibility Advisory Committee has twice passed strong motions, calling for Toronto not to allow e-scooters in public places. We need it to continue to stand firm in this position, and to stand up for people with disabilities in Toronto. On May 5, 2021, Toronto City Council voted unanimously against allowing e-scooters, after hearing about their dangers for people with disabilities, seniors and others.
Last fall, an impressive list of disability and community organizations sent Toronto City Council a strong open letter, insisting that e-scooters should continue to be banned in Toronto. This shows there is overwhelming opposition from the organized disability community to being endangered by e-scooters.
Learn more by visiting the AODA Alliance website’s e-scooter page.