If you're a transit user you know how expensive it can get to move around the city. Especially since between 2009 and 2016 TTC monthly passes have gone up by a whopping 30% ($109 to $141.50), which is far more than salaries across the province have risen.
Both the City of Toronto and the TTC acknowledge that this price hike has made it difficult on the lower income adults in the city trying to travel using transit, and have rolled out the Fair Pass program, which, "improves transit services in the inner suburbs" and "makes transit more affordable for low-income residents."
According to a City of Toronto report, low-income adults aged 20 to 64, as a group, pay the highest TTC fares. This is because they aren't able to afford the high upfront cost of a TTC monthly pass which gives riders the largest discount per ride, so they must resort to higher cost option of tokens.
However under the new pass program, lower income adults can qualify for massive discounts. The discount level for the Fair Pass Program be 33% for the adult single fare ($1.95/ trip) and 21% for the adult monthly pass ($112/ pass).
Those eligible for the Fair Pass Program discounts are all Toronto residents living with an income below the Low Income Measure + 15% (see chart below), excluding Ontario Disability Support Program and Ontario Works clients who are already receiving transportation support.
The program is being rolled out in multi-phases as follows:
Phase 1 – staring in March 2018 – includes only Ontario Disability Support Program and Ontario Works clients not in receipt of transportation supports
Phase 2 – starting in March 2019 – extends eligibility to residents receiving housing supports or child care fee subsidy whose household income fall under the Low-Income Measure +15% eligibility threshold
Phase 3 – starting in March 2020 – extends eligibility to all other Toronto residents living with an income below the Low Income Measure +15% threshold
With the 3 phases in mind, only Ontario Disability Support programs clients and Ontario Work clients are eligible for the discounts right now. General low income Torontonians won't be given access to these Fair Passes until 2020.
Source: City of Toronto