NEWS

Transit operators hold roundtable to discuss violence

08/23/2013 12:36 EDT | Updated 10/23/2013 05:12 EDT
Transit operators are gathering for a roundtable in Burnaby, B.C., today to discuss ways to curb violence against transit operators.

They'll share stories of being spat on, kicked, punched and assaulted.

The union representing bus drivers in the Lower Mainland says incidents are happening more frequently than last year, when an assault was reported every three days.

Saskatchewan Liberal MP Ralph Goodale will attend the roundtable to bolster his private members’ bill on the issue.

“To hear their personal experience and I tell you when you hear some of them, they're pretty poignant about what some of the injuries they've suffered and the psychological damage that follows from this.”

Goodale describes the attacks as epidemic across the country.

“There are over 2,000 cases of assault or other offences against bus drivers every year."

His bill aims to make the assault of on-duty transit operators an aggravating factor in sentencing.

Goodale's bill is the fourth private members’ bill dealing with stiffer sentencing for people who assault transit operators. None so far have been successful.

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