Young Women In Motion Share Ideas To Improve The Bike-Friendliness With Municipal Election Candidates

Sunday August 21st, 2022

Posted at 3:39pm

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Young Women in Motion – Breaking Barriers with Bikes shared their unique perspectives and ideas about how to create a more bike-friendly city for women in Windsor at a presentation and discussion with all candidates running in the City of Windsor Election at Charles Clark Square on Thursday.

The group is made up of young women from newcomer and racialized communities led by Women’s Enterprise Skills Training of Windsor, Inc. (WEST) in partnership with Bike Windsor Essex. Mentoring teams and experts have been coaching the 20 young women since May to help them build their confidence, mobility, cycling skills, and ability to contribute meaningful recommendations to municipal planners.

Young Women in Motion Program participants Ishita Bhatia and Obaida Dabaja, announced seven recommendations calling on prospective municipal leaders to widen existing bike lanes, add warning lights for cyclists on bike lanes that end suddenly, have one day a month for roads to be for cyclists only, create barriers separating walkers from cyclists riding on riverfront paths, creating no-car pathways for students travelling to the University of Windsor, create a safe pathway with barriers from Wyandotte to Devonshire Mall to enable women to shop by bike and increasing bike parking at the Devonshire Mall.

The recommendations were based on the participant’s observations, in-person sessions with one of Windsor’s leading voices for cycling in Windsor: Lori Newton, Executive Director of Bike Windsor Essex, and research shared with them on Zoom calls with Kay Teschke, Professor Emeritus. University of British Columbia (UBC) whose Cycling in Cities program research investigated route infrastructure that encourages or discourages bicycling and increases or decreases risks of cycling injuries. And Dr. Anne Lusk of the Harvard T. Chan School of Public Health research on comfortable and safe environments for women, children, seniors, parents, individuals of color, and with lower incomes.

“There is only one woman among Windsor’s ten city council members. Therefore, it is crucial to keep the viewpoint of women in mind while creating new laws and regulations,” said participant Ishita Bhatia.

On August 31st at 5:00pm the Young Women in Motion will celebrate their accomplishments with a ride leaving from Bike Windsor Essex in Walkerville and travelling along the riverfront trail to the Ambassador Bridge on the refurbished bikes they will own. Women and girls who would like to join the ride are invited to take part.

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