Pack the Court support for (Tomislav)/more not less bikelanes/Safer Cycling in Toronto/Jarvis St. Bi
Come out and support more rather than less bike lanes in Toronto at the Toronto College Park Courtroom 505! Let's turn Toronto around and join other Cities leading the way to a safer and more environmentally sustainable transportation plan and infrastructure.
**THE ARREST/TORONTO WANTS MORE BIKE LANES**
On November 13, 2012, I was arrested for an act of civil disobedience. I peacefully sat in the Jarvis St. bicycle lane to prevent its removal by the City of Toronto. In doing so, I joined and supported the work of hundreds of citizens - motorists, cyclists, pedestrians, professionals and activists who organized and participated in events that day, and in the preceding days and months before to prevent the removal of the lanes and for safer, healthier cycling in Toronto.
The Jarvis St. bicycle lanes were removed without any public consultation, and with a cost of almost $300,000 of taxpayers' money. For this action, I was charged with two criminal offences: 1. mischief/interference with public property; and 2. obstruction of a peace officer.
**SHOW SUPPORT FOR MORE LANES - COME OUT AND INVITE OTHERS**
I would very much appreciate if one, some, many or all of you came to my court hearing on January 17 at 2 p.m. in downtown Toronto. Let's even pack the court and show them we want change! This court date will likely be my last hearing, except for perhaps a review of the completion of the terms of my participation in the Direct Accountability Program in a few months.
My lawyer Peter Rosenthal and I have agreed that my participation in the Direct Accountability Program is the best option for myself and best represents the goals of the advocacy in which I and others were engaged. This program offers me an opportunity to take responsibility for my actions and repair any harm I may have caused my community. Also it makes me eligible for the withdrawal of my criminal charges. We agreed to these terms given that there is no shortage of evidence establishing that I committed these actions and that I did them with the conscious intent to try and stop the removal of the bike lanes through non-violent civil disobedience. Further, I was given ample time to express myself freely to the media.
**NO NEW LANES/REMOVING LANES=MISCHIEF**
Having said this, there is no question in my mind and in the minds of many of those engaged in this campaign that the City of Toronto and certain leaders within it have committed a much greater and more harmful act of mischief than I and other protestors have, mischief in not consulting with the public and mischief that the City's own reports suggest will certainly result in injuries and harm to our community for many years to come and quite possibly against the real will and desire of the people for a cost $300,000.
Peter and I will be accepting and negotiating the terms of the Direct Accountability Program in court next week. The hearing is open to the public, and we would appreciate your support, if you can make it.
**MORE BIKE LANES!!!**
Let this become an upbeat expression of a desire to join great Cities in North America and the world, that are jointly building thousands of kilometers of safe bike lanes every year, improving transportation and making it safer, cleaner and more sustainable, for us all - pedestrians, car drivers, cyclists and the planet!
Date: Thursday, January 17, 2013
Time: 2 p.m.
Place: Courtroom 505, Ontario Court of Justice, 444 College St. (College Park at Yonge), Toronto
P.S. Peter and I will be holding a press conference Wednesday January 16 at 10am and a few hours (e.g. between 8 or 9am and noon) help with that would be appreciated as well. Please contact me directly if you are interested in helping out with that or have skills with press conferences/media you can share.