p2pnet view Off Topic:- “I’ve been speaking with a law professor at Carleton and he’s going to help me get a court date, and I’m going to fight this thing.”
That’s an angry Kelsie Jones (right) after being caught in an Ottawa transit system sting aimed at trapping students trying to sell their U-Pass cards.
The U-Pass program is a “one-year pilot project for Carleton and University of Ottawa students that was passed by city council in January after lobbying by student associations, and approved by referendums on both campuses this spring”, says the Ottawa Citizen.
Under it, a $290 fee is tacked on the tuition of all full-time students who then get a bus pass that’s valid from September 2010 until April 2011 —-
—- whether they want it or not, and whether they’ll use it, or not.
OC Transpo initially opposed the U-Pass plan, says the story, quoting OC Transpo’s chief special constable and manager of transit-law enforcement, Kim Weston-Martin, as stating, “This wasn’t an OC-Transpo-initiated thing. This came straight from the universities. A student annual pass prior to this was somewhere in the vicinity of $920. A U-Pass is $290. So there’s a substantial savings.”
But “Jones, who lives downtown and takes a free shuttle from the University of Ottawa campus to her classes at Carleton, said she doesn’t use OC Transpo and was surprised by the mandatory U-Pass charge when she went to pay her tuition fees in August”, according to the post.
Other students were selling their U-Passes on Kijiji, “and she didn’t realize that she was doing anything wrong when she decided at the beginning of October to do the same”, it says.
She was trying to recoup the $290, but instead wound up having to pay $610.
Ottawa mayoral candidate and councillor Clive Doucet, who championed the U-Pass, believes Jones shouldn’t have tried to sell hers, says the Ottawa Citizen.
“Either you’re a student with student benefits, or you’re not a student with student benefits. It’s the same as medicare,” he says in the story. “You’re not allowed to sell your medicare to another person if you don’t need it.”
“It took 10 years to get it, and we really want to keep it”, Doucet states, adding, “This is playing right into the hands of those who don’t want to keep it.”
Ottawa Citizen – U-Pass seller feels thrown under the bus, October 21, 2010
First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win ~ Mahatma Gandhi
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