Bicycle Network: Bicycle Coalition
(This page is maintained for historical purposes)
Announcement of the Bicycle Coalition
13 September 2007 announcement
Newly formed Bicycle Coalition calls on both parties to get people riding
Australia’s four largest member-based bike riding organisations have come together to form the Bicycle Coalition in recognition of the ongoing boom in bike riding.
Its first actions will be to ensure cycling becomes an item on the Federal Election agenda.
The Bicycle Coalition is calling on both major parties to make a commitment during the election campaign to get people riding for their health, for transport and for the environment.
The Coalition is made up of Bicycle Network Victoria, Bicycle New South Wales, Bicycle Queensland and Bicycle South Australia. It has a combined membership of over 60 000 and the support of a quarter of a million bike riders across Australia,
Harry Barber, spokesperson for the Bicycle Coalition, said: “Whoever ends up being responsible for the national health system has a responsibility to take advantage of the current swing to bike riding. When people ride they substantially reduce their chance of falling to the diseases linked to low exercise such as heart attack, cancers, diabetes and depression.”
He said the bicycle organisations were leading the way in creating special programs that met the boom in bike riding and, at the same time, were leading the way in easing traffic congestion, fighting obesity and improving workplace productivity.
Mr Barber called on the major parties to:
• Support the National Ride to Work program because bicycle commuting reduces congestion as well as easing the strain on bulging public transport, improves workplace productivity and cuts greenhouse gasses;
• Support the Ride2School program, currently underway in Victoria but ready to be run out across Australia given financial support from Canberra: in six months the Victorian program has helped get 80% of primary students walking and riding;
• Put in place infrastructure solutions across the country including more bike lanes, bike paths and trails for informal exercise and recreation.
‘Increasing bike riding offers a relatively cheap and quick solution to a number of today’s biggest problems. We expect that the Bicycle Coalition will enable the community to get these benefits sooner.’ Mr Barber said.