TORONTO — Starting a petition might seem complicated, but it’s easier than it looks, and the Association of Canadian Independent Travel Advisors (ACITA) is urging all travel advisors, agency owners and travel industry personnel to help the travel industry by making their voice heard with a petition.
And if you don’t want to start a petition, be sure to sign one, says ACITA.
A Paper Petition only requires 25 signatures in order to be presented in the House of Commons by a sponsoring MP, say ACITA co-founders Judith Coates, Brenda Slater and Nancy Wilson.
“In order to be valid, the people signing need to be a resident or citizen of Canada, provide their contact information, and there is no minimum age. They don’t have to belong to the travel industry, and they can be members of the same household.”
As ACITA notes, for more than a year now, the travel industry has dealt with setbacks, agency closures and a zero recovery rate because of government-imposed travel restrictions. ACITA was formed in the first months of the pandemic, in June 2020, “so that Independent Travel Advisors could have a collaborative voice when reaching out to Government officials about the unique circumstances that they are in, due to COVID,” says the co-founders.
To date, ACITA has met with more than 175 Cabinet Ministers, Members of Parliament and policy advisors, via Zoom calls, to explain how the current travel shutdowns are affecting their businesses.
Now ACITA is asking for all travel advisors, agency owners and travel industry personnel to join them “in gathering signatures for an onslaught of Paper Petitions to be read by MP’s in the House of Commons.”
Says Flemming Friisdahl, President of The Travel Agent Next Door (TTAND): “This is a really great way to have our voice continually heard in the House of Commons, on an ongoing basis. We need to keep our requirements front and centre until we receive the assistance that will keep this industry going for years to come.”
Adds ACITA’s Coates: ”We want to flood the House of Commons with the message that we will not back down until the government recognizes that the travel industry needs support. There are currently three different petitions available for signature:” one for commission protection from the airlines/tour companies who are still in negotiations with the government for a bailout package, one for an extension of the CRB, and one for sector-specific funding.
Coates says ACITA is asking f”or all travel advisors to get on board to make this happen. Full instructions are included with the Petitions, when they are sent to you.”
Coates adds that anyone interested in gathering 25 signatures for a Paper Petition, can submit their information here, to receive the Petitions from ACITA, along with additional instructions: https://forms.gle/XVPTzMr6zGrEM1tdA