Some politicians call the idea of a ban on texting while walking “silly,” but that hasn’t stopped a majority of Toronto residents from being in favour of it. A new Forum Research poll found that 56 per cent of people support city council’s desire to make it illegal to use a smartphone or similar device while crossing the street.
Only 35 per cent disagreed with the ban, while 8 per cent had no opinion, according to the poll, which also probed sentiments on the end of a rarely enforced street hockey ban, the TORONTO sign and a revamp of Yonge St.
“Council’s proposal to ban texting and walking was dismissed by the province and others, but whoever dismisses it is out of touch with the public,” said Forum Research president Lorne Bozinoff. “People seem to be on board with this idea.”
Mayor John Tory and councillors were chided for a a 26-15 vote to ask the province to outlaw use of devices “while on any travelled portion of a roadway.”
But some councillors ridiculed the idea and the apparently skeptical Ontario transportation minister said it would be up to Toronto council to introduce such a rule.
Support for the crackdown, the poll found, was highest among North Yorkers, the oldest Torontonians, middle-income earners and private-vehicle commuters.
The proposal, which some called an attempt to blame pedestrians for being killed by drivers, was least popular with cyclists.
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