VICTORIA, B.C. – Adam Olsen, B.C. Green Party spokesperson for transportation, responded to the government’s announced changes to update the taxi industry and bring in a ride-hailing regime.
“While we are disappointed British Columbians will still not have ride-hailing this winter, we are glad that the government has committed to a path forward,” said Olsen.
“In our view, a better approach would be to modernize the taxi industry concurrently with bringing in ride-hailing, however it is encouraging that the initial legislative steps to enable ride-hailing will be before the House this Fall. There has been a lot of broken promises on this issue. The Minister needs to meet the goal of accepting applications by Fall 2019. I look forward to seeing the details of the application process and ensuring that it is efficient and fair so that consumers do not have undue delay in accessing more transportation options.
“Ride-hailing is disruptive and implementing it requires policymakers to address important issues like working conditions, public safety and a fair playing field for existing business. Andrew Weaver has been a tireless and often lone champion for the need for government to proactively address disruptive technological change head-on. Andrew has kept the pressure on government to convene an all-party committee that delivered the consensus report on ride-hailing which will now form the basis of government’s legislation.
“This is how elected officials should be serving British Columbians: by working together to engage stakeholders and the public and to deliberate at a policy level to come up with innovative solutions. Unfortunately, the issue of ride-hailing has been treated like a political football by the two establishment parties due to its particular importance in swing ridings. Our world and global economy are changing rapidly. We cannot afford to allow political squabbles to stand in the way of delivering for the people who elected us to make these sometimes challenging decisions. To that end, I encourage anyone frustrated by this delay to consider how this issue would have played out differently under a system of proportional representation, where both major parties’ grasp on power does not depend on a few crucial swing ridings.”
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