Toronto response to USA crisis

  1. I have heard that passengers from planes diverted to Toronto area airports had to sleep in the terminals. All passengers in the Atlantic provinces were billeted with local families, schools were closed and the emergency response system kicked in to arrange emergency shelters. Local businesses donated food and toiletries and voliunteers were onhand to tend to individual needs or to just chat. In Gander the number of passengers outnumbered the population two to one, but everyone who wanted to stay with a local family instead of at a shelter did so. Lines to offer assistance were jammed. Now, if it is true that Toronto passengers had to sleep in the terminal, that is disgraceful.

    What is going to be done to provide a better response in the future? It is a real embarassment to the rest of Canada- they need to get their act together.
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  3. by   fergus51
    I hadn't heard this. I am sure people in Toronto wwould have been willing to take people, though I don't know how the logistics of getting so many people out of the airport would go. I am sure they were not forced to sleep in the terminal. Toronto is a big city with a lot of hotels. Not ideal, but better than a terminal.
  4. by   Polarbear
    When the call went out here in toronto and surrounding area sevearal work mates and myself tried to call. With every attempt we recieved a busy signal. We keep with up with it untill the radio annouced to stop calling. If there were people still there that's a shame because there was people that would've taken them in. So it's not another case of "prissy" Toronto people. I'm happy that Canada as a 'whole' has stepped up to help in this sad situation.
  5. by   canoehead
    Reading MacLean's magazine they have half a page on the HOTEL'S response to stranded passengers, nothing on what the public did, and then 5 pages on how Canada was possibly the route the terrorists took into the USA.

    And then...the president's speech.

    I hope that with the next issues we will see more of what regular people have done to help. Halifax papers are full of thank you's from individuals, one couple got married here, got oodles of help and donations for the celebration. It is so disappointing that all the caring and help is not reported.

    Feel like I am beating a dead horse. Maybe it is as the people around here say, "that's just the way they are." But the same people are still raising money, wearing red, white and blue ribbons, and donating teddy bears.

  6. by   Jay-Jay
    I spoke to a lady who works in one of the downtown Toronto hotels during the terrorist crisis. She said the hotel was "absolutely swamped," and they were booking people two to a room if they were willing to share. Everyone pitched in to help those stranded by the closing down of air traffic. I don't know if passengers were put up for free, or whether they still had to pay, but I do know the hotels did what the could to help out.

    So, what's the story now? They are hurting big time, just like everyone else in the travel industry. The lady I spoke of above has been laid off and is looking for work.
  7. by   canoehead
    In Halifax and Sydney people were vowing to come back to us and spend some time when the circumstances were better because of all the help and friendly faces pulling together. So I think that everyone is suffering right now but that those same people will be back in a year or two.

    I think it is a shame that news orgs like Time magazine are only mentioning Canadians in connection with being a route for potential terrorists, and lax security. If NYC had been left with twice it's population in travelling "refugees" and had fed and housed them all we would have never heard the end how wonderful they were.

    Just for the record- Canada took care of it's own security, and the USA needs to take responsibility of IT'S own security. We can and have helped, but American international/immigration policy is an American issue, not ours.
  8. by   fergus51
  9. by   canoehead
    Thanks fergus- sees like no one even has an opinion...

    Still burns me though, it was not just the USA that was hurt and traumatized. We all took a shot straight to the gut, and in the Atlantic provinces they jumped to do anything they could think of, and still talked about not being able to do anything. It's understandable that the main concern would be with people physically closer to the devastation, but at some point I wanted something more.

    A woman in a small town in Nova Scotia raised over $20 000 selling red, white and blue ribbons with a Canadian flag pin attached, to wear in support of a traumatized USA. All her materials and labor was donated, and she started her work the day before the president's speech to congress. The local news asked her how she felt about the speech and she said disappointed, but her help was still needed so they were going ahead full steam- and imagine how many pins were bought to make that much money!

    An impromptu barbeque on the Halifax waterfront (Sept 14)by the local police and firefighters was swamped, without any advertising, and just burgers and hot dogs.

    President Bush said he didn't acknowledge Canada because "you don't have to thank a brother." Well, even without the acknowledgement they just kept on giving and working and gathering at candlelight vigils, saying to each other "that's just the way they (Americans) are." Well since I've come to the USA the people have not been arrogant, ignorant jerks but that's the way he came off. And no other mention of Canada since except as a porthole for terrorists because of their lax security. (Jeez)

    COME ON!!! Doesn't anyone have anything to say about this???