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Discounted student TTC pass comes with a catch

Last Updated: Wednesday, March 19, 2008 | 9:00 AM ET Comments22Recommend9 CBC News

A controversial plan to offer a cheaper transit pass to students at the University of Toronto Scarborough campus will be voted on by the students Wednesday.

The TTC is offering what it calls a U-Pass at $60 per month to students at the campus, but there’s a catch.

The deal stipulates all students must pay for the pass, whether they use it or not, as part of their annual fees.

If the referendum passes, every student will automatically receive a U-Pass for the school year at a steeply reduced rate, $60 per month instead of the usual $87.

But Vikky Leung, a student at the Scarborough campus, said the forced purchase would be unfair for many who don’t use the TTC to get to school: “Some people live in residence, people live across the street from school, people who drive, people who car pool, people who get a ride from their parents.”

Leung said it’s unfair to be charged an extra $480 a year for something she won’t use.

Tiffany Gerris, who is running the “Yes” side for the U-Pass campaign, said it’s a good deal for students, providing not only economic benefits, but environmental ones as well.

TTC chair Adam Giambrone said the only way to make the offer work is if every student pays.