Crowd protests STC closure in Regina, call it an 'essential service'

Protesters gathered in Regina on Tuesday at the STC bus depot to urge the province to reconsider scrapping the Crown corporation.

Protesters urge government to reconsider shuttering provincial bus service

The STC was cut in the March 22 provincial budget, a move the government said would save $85 million. (Société Radio-Canada)

A large crowd of people gathered at Regina's STC depot on Tuesday to protest the closure of the provincial bus company.

The government said it would save $85 million from the cut, but many feel as though the government has left the vulnerable and those living in rural areas high and dry. 

Calls were made for the government to reverse its decision to scrap the Crown corporation, not just to save jobs but for the sake of those who utilize the public service. 

Jackie Law, whose father works for STC, said the effects of the Crown being shuttered will be far reaching. 

"It's not only going to hurt me, it's going to hurt my kids," Law said. 

Law said the STC benefits many Saskatchewan residents. (Société Radio-Canada)

"We need to be protecting our Crowns, STC. There's no point in selling it," she said.

"It's not just to protect those drivers; it's to protect everyone who has cancer, dialysis. The rural [residents] use it; the farmers use it. It's an essential service for this province. It has to stay."

Law accused the government of being "out to lunch" and that the province is "up for a fight."

The STC is set to close by the end of May, eliminating 224 jobs.

​Finance Minister Kevin Doherty has said the government plans to balance the budget in three years.

With files from Société Radio-Canada