Improve Bus Safety for Children in Canada Now!

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She is beautiful and smart, she is confident, sports a fiery spirit; she sings a lot...she has a future. She is everything to me.

Her name is Martina, and she’s my vibrant five year old daughter. At the end of school days, I greet her, hold her in my arms…alive, whole and complete. I want to continue loving her and raising her but in the past and recently this very experience has been in jeopardy numerous times and it has me on edge.

In previous months, multiple drivers have driven through the bus’ flashing lights and extended stop sign. Each time, a close call for my little Martina. Last week was the fourth time a driver sped past the extended school bus sign; my daughter was already on the road. I fear for her safety daily because of the negligence I’m witnessing.

It’s not just happening here, our school has seen 33 similar infractions in the 2018/2019 school year, a number that continues to increase.

Unfortunately, penalties for those who pass stopped school buses locally is $368. A mere $368. In PEI, drivers can face up to a $5,000 fine, 12 demerit points and a temporarily suspended licence. Although no monetary value can be assigned to my daughter’s life it’s time to take this seriously.

I understand that ultimately, we aren’t in control of our destiny, but we should be taking due care. And this care should be influenced now…ideally before the start of our next school year. 

1. Please increase the fines for drivers who ignore school bus stop signs.

2. Please consider the installation of extended stop arms for our buses.