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National organization of Indigenous women "deeply concerned" by Greyhound cuts

National organization of Indigenous women

Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Claire Trevena said replacement options for the bus system are being explored.

"The decline in ridership that led to the hard decision that Greyhound Canada took this week regarding its routes in Western Canada was not due to any single incident", Stuart Kendrick, senior-vice president of Greyhound Canada, said in a statement provided to CBC.

"In the countryside, many of our communities are remote".

"Greyhound has been cutting back service to rural areas for years due to lack of ridership and profitability ..."

Greyhound blames a 41 per cent drop in ridership along with a 35 per cent reduction in package shipping since 2010.

The company blamed "a challenging transportation environment that is characterized by declining ridership in rural communities; increased competition from subsidized national and inter-regional passenger transportation services; the new entry of ultra-low-cost carriers; regulatory constraints, and increased vehicle travel".

Western's Canada's transportation ministers say they will be looking to the federal government for assistance, following a meeting to talk about Greyhound's decision to withdraw service.

"What should have happened was STC and the government could have taken a look at how they could have better utilized the public service that they were providing, whatever that could have meant", she said.

Bus charter companies, which transport sports teams, might also find a niche in regular scheduled service, he suggested.

Pacific Western Transportation-based out of Calgary, Pacific Western Transportation runs services in British Columbia, Alberta, Yukon Territory, Saskatchewan, and Ontario and also owns Red Arrow Motorcoach, operating out of Alberta.

"We have made the hard decision to downsize our Canadian business by discontinuing operations in all provinces except Ontario and Quebec and one route in British Columbia".

The issue of transportation along that route, which includes the notorious stretch of B.C.'s Highway 16 known as the Highway of Tears, was a major point of contention last fall during hearings at the national inquiry for missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, where a number of women have gone missing. The only route that will continue to run in B.C.is from Seattle to Vancouver.

The cancellations are scheduled to take effect October 31. "Inherently, when one competitor leaves the market that says to other competitors there's an opportunity to increase costs", added Corrigall", or if they don't increase costs, keep them level and then the lower cost competitor is no longer in the market".

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