COVID-19 - June 15 Update

Today is Elder Abuse Awareness Day. We should all take a moment to recognize that elder abuse continues to be a serious issue for many older persons in our community, City and across our country. On this day in particular we should reach to older relative and friends to let them know they are loved and that we care for them.

This weekend, I was pleased to join the Block 4 Black (physically distancing), out-door fundraiser on Queen Street West for the Black Legal Action Centre. It was nice to again join the community, enjoy some music and food, all while supporting a good cause. I want to thank Deanne Moser, Ashley McKenzie Barnes, 6IX Cycle and the other organizers and restaurants for putting together this important but responsible event, which is helping raise money to support efforts to combat anti-black racism. As we see protests continue across the world trying to spark an important conversation, at home, we have to be sure that take action to break us out of many years of underfunding social services. We need a reform that includes a substantive and important review of the potential reallocation of resources.

The City has been moving quickly in order to prepare for the provincial approved reopening. Today, we have launched a registration form and guidebook for the proposed CafeTO program, which will allow bars to have additional safe outdoor dining spaces, allowing customers to support their local businesses safely.

In order to help families that rely on City child-care facilities, the City is also working on a phased approach to reopening their facilities. This reopening will incorporate new provincial requirements, which will place additional limitations on available spaces. The City and its child care operators will not charge fees to existing child care families if they do not have access to a space or decide not to accept a space. During reopening, Toronto Early Learning and Childcare Services (TELCCS) fees will remain at the same rate as they were prior to the closure. Based on the provincial guidelines, all licensed home child care providers will be required to adhere to new operational requirements as well.

At today’s Planning and Housing Committee, we discussed the upcoming Growth Plan Conformity and Municipal Comprehensive Review, which presents an opportunity to address a number of the growth-related challenges facing Toronto today and in the future, including housing affordability, climate change, mobility, public health and our recovery from this pandemic. I am pleased to see this work moving forward so we can create a more sustainable, equitable City. We also had our annual progress report on Housing Now. The Housing Now program has allowed us to invest right in our communities, creating affordable housing and mixed-income communities and I am glad to see it moving forward strong.


Click to see Councillor Bailao speaking at Planning and Housing

In an effort to keep the public informed, the City has launched the COVID-19 monitoring dashboard. This dashboard will provide residents with a current summary on how the city is progressing in the response to COVID-19, especially as Toronto moves towards recovery. It will also help Toronto Public Health to carefully monitor COVID-19 activity and adjust actions if the local situation changes.

Our office continues to work to serve you remotely. If we can be of any assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us by email at councillor_bailao@toronto.ca or by phone at 416.392.7012.

In community,

Ana

Questions from the Community!

Each day, we are working to answer important questions from our community. To keep you all informed, we will feature some of these questions each newsletter. Have a question you think would be good to share? Reach out to us at councillor_bailao@toronto.ca.

What does the provincial government's decision mean today, are restaurants open for business in Toronto and are people from Toronto allowed to travel outside the City?
Many restaurants in Toronto are open for take-out, pick-up and delivery and everyone is encouraged to support our local businesses. In terms of travelling outside of the City, the province has put no restrictions in place in terms of visiting other cities other than the need to practice safe physical distancing and respecting public health directives. The link below outlines the provincial announcement today.
https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/06/more-people-can-get-back-to-work-as-additional-businesses-and-services-to-reopen-this-week.html

Is it true that commercial tenants cannot be evicted during the pandemic?
Yes, many people have been advocating to the provincial government to take this step in order to protect small business tenants from being evicted from their premises. The federal and provincial government put in place a Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program to support both small businesses and commercial landlords. The program effectively covers 75% of a commercial landlord's rent. In view of the availability of this program, the provincial government has decided to protect commercial tenants by banning commercial evictions up to August 31, 2020. Details on this announcement are below.
https://news.ontario.ca/mma/en/2020/06/ontario-proposing-temporary-ban-on-commercial-evictions.html

Local Updates

Modular Housing Consultation – 150 Harrison St
The City of Toronto is proposing to build 44 modular housing apartments at Harrison Street and Dovercourt Road. Would you like to share your views? Learn more about how to get involved here

Green Line Public Meeting
Finding new parkland in the built-up downtown core is a challenge. The Hydro corridor that runs from Davenport and Macpherson Ave west and northwest towards Earlscourt Park presents a rare opportunity to create a linear open space amenity within a rapidly intensifying city.

A public meeting will be happening on July 7at 6:30PM. Visit http://toronto.ca/greenline to register and for more details.

Sewer Rehabilitation Work - Lappin Ave, Morrison Ave and Sterling Rd
The City of Toronto will be rehabilitating existing sewer infrastructure in neighbourhoods throughout Toronto. The work is scheduled to begin in August 2020. Depending on the type of repairs required, construction will be completed in two or three phases over a 10-month period. Additional details can be found here.

New Sistering Mural
Along with brightening up their front space at 962 Bloor (updates coming soon!), Sistering also wanted to add some colour to their indoor space for when clients are welcomed back.

This work was completed by the talented Tee Fergus, who brought some colour therapy into the meal service area of Sistering’s Drop In with this beautiful indoor mural.

Recent Municipal Announcements

Municipal

News Release – City of Toronto opens registration for CaféTO plan to safely increase outdoor dining space for local restaurants and bars
A City staff report on CaféTO, scheduled for consideration at Executive Committee on June 22, proposes the City take quick action to make way for additional safe outdoor dining spaces for local restaurants and bars. A simple online registration form and guidebook for the proposed program is now available at toronto.ca/cafeTO.

City of Toronto report on management of COVID-19 in its 10 long-term care homes
Toronto Mayor John Tory today released a report by City of Toronto staff from the Seniors Services and Long-Term Care division that outlines the response by staff prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, its actions during the pandemic, and recommendations on how best to adapt the City’s 10 long-term care homes post-COVID-19.

Toronto Public Health launches COVID-19 monitoring dashboard
A key role of public health in the battle against COVID-19 is to use current evidence and local data to inform decisions about interventions and measures to keep residents safe and healthy. Today, as progress towards reopening continues to be monitored, the City of Toronto is pleased to launch a new COVID-19 monitoring dashboard. This new dashboard will provide a progress assessment for the local COVID-19 response.

City of Toronto working to safely reopen licensed child care centres
Mayor John Tory announced today that the City of Toronto is beginning a phased approach to reopening City-run licensed child care centres starting Monday, June 29 with the enhanced health and safety measures laid out by the Province of Ontario to keep children, their families and child care centre workers safe.

City of Toronto takes top spot as fastest growing city in Canada and U.S.
The City of Toronto is North America's fastest growing city and the Toronto CMA is the fastest growing metropolitan area in all of Canada and U.S. in terms of population growth, according to the latest research from the Centre for Urban Research and Land Development at Ryerson University.

City of Toronto working to reopen farmers’ markets across the city, St. Lawrence Market outdoor market opens Saturday
Today, Mayor John Tory announced that the City of Toronto is working with market organizers to safely reopen farmers’ markets usually located on 22 City sites.

Farmers’ markets are valued members of the food supply chain and provide Torontonians with access to fresh fruits and vegetables, encourage residents to get outside and be physically active, and support the local agriculture sector.

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