TTC Operator’s fatherly instincts take over

A TTC Operator has been awarded the Stand Up For Kids Award by the Children’s Aid Societies of Toronto in recognition of his actions in protecting a toddler from serious harm.

The award was presented to TTC Operator Chris Paulsen by newly appointed Minister of Children and Youth Services, Dr. Eric Hoskins, at the head office of the Children’s Aid Society of Toronto on Nov. 8.

In September, Paulsen was operating his Flemington Park bus when out of the corner of his eye his spotted a small child, wearing only diapers, walking along a pathway towards a busy street.

“Being a father, I stopped the bus, whipped open the doors and ran back to pick up the child who had walked onto the roadway. I think my passengers, and those at the stop ahead, were wondering where I was going,” Paulsen joked on accepting his award.

Paulsen took the child into his care, called the TTC’s Transit Control Centre to advise Dispatchers of the situation and flagged down a police cruiser for assistance. He said he is delighted to hear the boy is now in capable hands and doing fine.

“Chris’s keen actions and alertness of his surroundings prevented what could have been a tragic ending to this story. Instead, the outcome is inspiring,” said TTC Chair Karen Stintz.

“Chris’s keen actions represent countless employees who, on a daily basis, keep an eye out for their customers and for the community in which they serve. He will be nominated for a monthly Transit Community Watch Award,” said TTC Chief General Manager Gary Webster.

“Chris made a choice to stand up for kids. He didn’t look the other way,” said David Rivard, Chief Executive Officer of the Children’s Aid Society of Toronto. “His decision has had an irreplaceable impact on the life of this child.”

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