This article was originally published in April 2019.
A Liberal MPP in Ottawa introduced a new private member's bill this week that would make Ontario's daylight savings time permanent. The bill, initiated by Orléans MPP Marie-France Lalonde, would scrap the daylight savings time changes. If passed, Ontarians will no longer have to spring forward and fall back an hour every year.
Lalonde's website states, "It is time to stop changing our clocks twice a year. It is time to protect sunshine."
If it passes, Bill 98 - which has been named the Sunshine Protection Act - would make daylight savings time permanent on November 1st, 2020. That means Sunday, March 8th, 2020 would be the final time the province moves its clocks an hour forward.
Lalonde says on the Bill's website, "Study after study has shown the many benefits of a year-round Daylight-Saving Time. We need to respect evidence as we move forward in a new way"
She has reportedly claimed that switching the clocks results in confusion for Ontarians and is an inconvenience to businesses.
"We also know there's an impact on productivity [and] sadly on our roads, there is a significant impact on the safety of our roads because of those changes," she said. According to Lalonde, "Permanent DST means people who work a standard day shift – and kids who go to school during the day – get more daylight after work. It means getting up when it is a bit darker in exchange for an extra hour of light after work."
She also declared that sunsets in the middle of winter would be at approximately 6:00 PM, rather than 5:00 PM, and sunrises would be at 8:30 AM instead of 7:30 AM.
On the Sunshine Protection Act's website, numerous benefits to permanent Daylight Saving Time are outlined. Below is the list of benefits from the website:
Children get more exercise on days with later sunsets;
Rates of outdoor robberies decline;
Reduce traffic-related deaths, especially for pedestrians;
No switching clocks back and forth every year;
No loss of productivity due to the time change.
"People are sick of watching the sun set while they are still at work," says MPP Lalonde. "Let’s protect our sunshine and make Ontario a safer and happier place."