(Metro News) QC urges MRT, LRT to offer 20% fare discounts to students

January 2, 2010 1:10 am 

MANILA, Jan. 1 – The Quezon City government on Friday asked the management of the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) and the Light Railway Transit (LRT) to grant 20 percent fare discounts to students to ease their financial woes.

QC Vice Mayor Herbert Bautista said millions of students were forced to stop schooling primarily due to their family’s financial constraints, forcing them to look for employment.

Majority of the out-of-school youths are discouraged from pursuing their studies as only a small percentage of the unemployed sector land jobs while those who get hired are forced to accept minimum wage rates.

With the bleak economic situation, Bautista appealed to the management running the mass transport to grant the fare hike to the students to give them a greater chance of continuing their education.

He said a 20 percent discount from Mondays through Saturdays given by the MRT and LRT was fair enough to ease the financial burden of the student-riders.

“We appeal to the corporate social responsibility of the LRT and MRT, this discount will be a tremendous help for students and their parents. With the pending petitions for fare increases by various public transport groups, there is a looming threat of more difficulties for them,’’ Bautista said.

He said the skyrocketing cost of living and education forces many youth to drop out from school while noting that a large percentage do not even finish secondary education.

“All students should benefit from the fare discounts from the primary to tertiary levels. They are already saddled with so many expenses and this is one way that the private sector can directly help them,’’ Bautista said.

Meanwhile, QC third district councilor Jimmy Borres warned drivers of public utility vehicles who ignore giving fare discounts to students.

Borres said erring drivers face the possibility of unfavorable circumstances.

He issued the warning as mounting complaints of jeepney drivers’ refusing to recognize the student fare discount have reached his office.

The parents said that the children could avail of their fare discounts as tricycle and jeepney drivers arrogantly insist on charging the students and pupils regular transportation rates. (PNA) RMA/JCA

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