Make Your Cycle Heard – Elect a new Cyclist’s Union Board

So this post will be a bit different…no cycling or savings to report on.  Instead, I hope that a few of you will take part in the second most important election to hit Toronto this year…that of the new Toronto Cyclist’s Union Board of Directors.  There are few reasons you should partake:

Reason 1:  Because you’re a member of the Toronto Cyclist’s Union*

*If not yet a member, please ask yourself “Do I like riding a bike?”  If yes, join for the mere $25 a year and add your voice to the rest of us that feel the same way in hopes that the city evolves to become even more bikable (bike-likable) in the future!

Reason 2:  Because you’re interested in the way cycling infrastructure and awareness improves in Toronto.  It is improving, but the Cyclist’s Union is a great way to help that process along and make sure cyclist voices are heard as municipal decisions are made.

And, lastly, Reason 3: Because hanging out at CSI for 2 hours always sounds fun…but this time it’s fun AND Democratic (did I mention the vote is Thursday at 6pm…and while anyone can attend, only members can vote…it’s not too late to sign up!

Why is this all relevant to this blog?  Well, I decided to really put myself out there and run for a position on the Board.  I think the Cyclists Union is doing some amazing things but that we might be getting a bit too caught up in the politics of today rather than focussing on the ever-present joy of pedaling one’s own transport around town.  In that, I’ll bring a voice of openness, acceptance, and encouragement towards all cyclists (this means you low-rider chrome cyclist, and you mountain bike lady, and even you unicycle guy….as long as there is a second unicycle right behind you so that it looks like a bike).  I think that with nearly 1000 members, and cycling being a hot topic in Toronto and the world right now, the Union should try to skirt the politics and focus on getting to 2500 members as soon as possible…and then 5000…and then 10000…

After the masses are in the saddle with us, we can then better partake in the political process.  20-30 cyclists wearing helmets in the city council chambers has helped on some big decisions…but 10000 cyclists crowding queens park can have quite a different impact, we just need not rush to get there.  In other places, joining organizations like the Cyclist’s Union has become part of enrolling for nearly every bike event in the city…and there is reason to do this here too.  We need to do more to publicize the benefits of the Union, and to make sure that everyone on a bike knows that they are already a member in spirit, but that a bit of financial support can go along ways to making their commute easier.

I’ll be reciting a bit of this on Thursday and hope you’ll consider voting in the election and that you will do so after reading a bit about the candidates.  Here’s a bit more information on the election and those running for seats:

Annual General Meeting Schedule: http://bikeunion.to/2010-agm

Parties Nominated for the Board of Directors: http://bikeunion.to/sites/tcu/files/Nominees%20for%20Board%20Positions%20-%20AGM%202010.pdf

Please check it out…but more importantly, please join the Union and help make Toronto better for bikes!

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