Crossing Guards Update

In recent months, I have been contacted by Don Valley West parents regarding the unacceptable gaps in crossing guard coverage in some of our school communities.
The City of Toronto is in the process of transitioning responsibility for the school crossing guard program from Toronto Police Services (TPS) to its Transportation Services division. While TPS is responsible for the provision of crossing guards for the 2018-2019 school year, the City has worked with them to contract an independent security service provider for relief coverage when a regular crossing guard is absent from work.

This school year, a number of crosswalks in our neighbourhoods have been without regular guard coverage due to the unexpected number of guards that retired and newly warranted locations.
As a result of this, I moved a motion at the December 2018 meeting of City Council requesting that the General Manager, Transportation Services make recommendations to improve and enhance the school crossing guard program. I have since followed this up with two meetings City management requesting immediate attention to the matter and urging staff to use all tools at their disposal to ensure that the City is providing reliable crossing guard coverage.
The City responded by pursuing an additional sole-sourced contract to manage demand and fill the remaining crossing guard vacancies in Ward 15. These new crossing guards have now completed police vulnerable sector screening and training and commenced duties on March 4th.
The importance of school crossing safety cannot be overstated and I will continue to advocate for students and parents across the ward until this issue is resolved. If you notice an unstaffed crossing guard post, please report it to the City's school crossing guard program by, or call 311.