Election 2019 Platform Analysis – Cycling

Bicycle power matters. In the eyes of our members, and in the eyes of millions of Canadians who ride already and would like to more often, there is no question that bicycle policy deserves a leading role in any nation’s plans for transportation, health and climate change.

SUMMARY OF THE RESULTS

Based on our analysis, it is clear that the Jagmeet Singh’s NDP party is the one party most sympathetic to bicycle policy at the national level. Indications of this were felt early, as Mr.Singh notably campaigned for the NDP leadership on a bicycle and parliamentary cycling caucus co-chair MP Gord Johns (Port Alberni) sponsored Bill C-312 a private members bill calling for a cycling strategy. Grand total for the NDP was 55 our of a total 100 available points.

Honourable mention goes to the Green Party. Although it was not explicit in supporting a national cycling strategy in its platform yet, its inclusion of a $100M annual fund for active transportation infrastructure is enough to help it garner 16 out of the 100 available points.

Unfortunately for the remaining four parties we assessed, their party platforms were either too vague or indeterminate on the subject of cycling to warrant points being awarded. Of course, we will continue to work with everyone to move cycling issues forward. Meanwhile, we urge all voters to make up their own minds and dive into the party platforms and decide for yourself. Individual candidates matter, as do local issues, take your MP or you candidate for a bike ride, write them an email, ask them for yourself!

HOW OUR ANALYSIS WORKS

Vélo Canada Bikes is non-partisan and believes strongly in the power of the bicycle to make a difference in everyone’s lives. On October 15th, we completed an analysis of all of the party platforms that had been shared publicly. Our goal was to see whether not our key messages had been sinking in, and offer our members and partners useful information when deciding who to vote for.

Our key messages have been clear. Vélo Canada Bikes, together with our member organizations and like-minded organizations across Canada, have long had two foundational and specific asks from the federal government: a national cycling strategy and a fund dedicated to active transportation infrastructure. To make sure Canada does both, we develop policy, we organize major events, we run programs, we build partnerships and we hold meetings with elected officials at all levels. We do that in Ottawa and in locales across the country, for you and with you.

The simple scoring system is designed to reflect whether or not each party has listened to these two important requests and incorporated them formally into their platform as we head into the election. Bonus points are awarded for using the words bicycle or active transportation anywhere in their platform – an important signal that their party is aware of how crucial our work is.

All parties were given a brief period to review the assessment and offer a rebuttal or any missing information. 

The results of our analysis and an explanation of the simple scoring system are below.

*a specific fund, for active transportation projects available to communities of any size, regardless of their level of mass transit infrastructure, designed to hasten the development of cycling path networks and other facilities across Canada (see full proposal) developed by VCB, Heart and Stroke, CAA, Share the Road, Canadian Cancer Society, Velo Quebec, et al (100/694*40)

**based on the Green Party’s platform costing document’s $100M/yr commitment. The score is based on $100M as a percentage of $694M/yr national walking and cycling infrastructure proposal or 0.14*45=6.48pts