Today, I joined thousands of others around the world, including Mayor John Tory and the City of Toronto in the #BlackOutTuesday campaign. This was done in support of and to raise awareness for eliminating anti-black racism. Many of you have written to me sharing your concerns and experiences with racism and while we are a diverse and welcoming city, we know that racism still exists in our communities, and that racialized people experience it every day.
While we need to continue to strive for better, the City has been active in its efforts to combat anti-black racism. The 2020 Budget for the City includes $15.3 million for poverty reduction including the creation of an Action Plan to Confront anti-black racism, an Indigenous equity plan, a Community Safety and Well-Being Plan, 15 Community Youth Prevention Grants, Community Crises Prevention Grants among many other initiatives. The 2020 TPS budget also included funding for body worn cameras for officers which the Chief of Police has indicated is a priority of his for this year. These are all important steps to making a more fair and equitable city and I will continue working to eliminate the barriers faced by racialized communities in our city.
This morning, Mayor Tory and I shared an important update on the City's Modular Housing Initiative. The City has selected two sites- 11 Macey Avenue and 150 Harrison Street to create 100 apartments to house people experiencing homelessness. The Harrison site is of course within our Ward 9 Davenport community. This is an important housing milestone for Toronto. Housing affordability is an issue that affects every neighbourhood in our City. The most visible and distressing need for housing is for people who are living day-to-day in shelters, on our streets, in our parks and on the edges of our city. The Modular Housing Initiative will have a tremendous impact for the people who move in and will now have housing with the supports they need to succeed. Helping people to move out of the shelter system has always been our goal. COVID has demonstrated more acutely than ever how important it is to have a safe, stable and comfortable home.
Modular supportive housing is a cost-effective approach that delivers better health and housing outcomes. We can deliver better housing with supportive services, for half of the cost of our shelter spaces. We are moving forward on our commitment to ensure that Toronto is a place where families and individuals can live in safe, well-maintained and affordable housing. I look forward to working with our community, and those around the City to make this program a success.
On Thursday, June 4 at 7pm, I will be hosting my third Virtual Davenport Town Hall to bring our community together, share updates from the City and hear from you about how we can support our community further. You can register for this event here, or by calling our office at 416.392.7012. I look forward to connecting with you.
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 [email protected] or by phone at 416.392.7012.
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 [email protected].
My apartment building has an outdoor swimming pool. Is it allowed to open?
Swimming pools were included in the provincial government's emergency order closing outdoor amenities. While some changes have been made in recent weeks with respect to amenities, swimming pools remain closed as per the provincial emergency order. This decision by the provincial government has been made on the advice of their Medical Officer of Health. As the province has a three stage approach to re-opening, and we are currently in stage one, the re-opening of swimming pools will be in either stage two or three. A link to this and other information on amenities such as this is below.
I've noticed that some people are now allowed to work in my home. Can we now have visitors or family come to visit?
No, the provincial government and the City's public health officials are still advising that you should not yet be inviting people over to your home for social visits. Only those who live with you, or identified essential workers who are providing services to you, should be allowed to come to your home at this time. Changes in these directives will be coming when appropriate but for the time being, you should not have people coming to you home to socialize. The link below provides further detail on this and associated issues.
Modular Housing in Ward 9
This morning Mayor John Tory and I announced a new affordable housing proposal for Davenport - Ward 9 in the Dundas/Dovercourt area. The proposal for 150 Harrison Street is for 44 bachelor apartments and support services as part of the City’s Modular Housing Initiative. This is a small in-fill development on City-owned land that will provide permanent affordable rental homes in our community. You can see more details about this project by downloading a digital brochure here or by visiting toronto.ca/modularhousing. On June 17 and 24 we will be hosting online public information sessions about this project.
In the meantime, share your input and questions with staff by emailing [email protected]
We look forward to hearing from you!
Watermain Replacement on Ossington Avenue from Bloor Street West to Dupont Street
The City of Toronto is planning to replace the watermain and the City-owned portion of substandard water services on Ossington Avenue from Bloor Street West to Dupont Street. This work is expected to take place from July 2020 until July 2021.
The water service is the underground pipe that brings water to your water meter and is owned by you and by the City. The part you own is from your house to the end of your property, the part the City owns is from the end of your property to the watermain.
City of Toronto Modular Housing Initiative progressing quickly; initial site locations identified
Within a month of receiving Council approval, the plan to expedite delivery of Phase 1 of the City of Toronto’s Modular Housing Initiative is well underway and the program is on track to provide stable, affordable, high quality housing and support services to 100 individuals experiencing homelessness by the fall of 2020.
City of Toronto update on COVID-19
There are 11,513 cases of COVID-19 in the city, an increase of 175 cases since yesterday. There are 384 people hospitalized, with 82 in ICU. In total, 8,783 people have recovered from COVID-19, an increase of 153 cases since yesterday. To date, there have been 835 COVID-19 deaths in Toronto. Case status data can be found on the City’s reporting platform.
Ontario Helps Manufacturers Ramp Up Production of Personal Protective Equipment
The Ontario government continues investing in local manufacturers in order to keep frontline workers and communities safe during the COVID-19 outbreak. More innovative businesses are receiving financial support today through the Ontario Together Fund to re-tool their processes and increase their capacity to make personal protective equipment (PPE).
Ontario Moves Forward with Signature Subway Project
Today, Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation, and Kinga Surma, Associate Minister of Transportation (GTA), announced the Ontario government is moving forward with the next step in building the Ontario Line, the signature project in the largest subway expansion in the province's history. The government is issuing the first two public-private partnership (P3) Requests for Qualifications (RFQs) to identify and qualify those who will design, build and maintain the subway line. The Ontario Line is being built under three separate P3 contracts.
Minister Bains announces members of new Industry Strategy Council
Today, the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, announced the names of nine business leaders who will join Monique Leroux—a strong business leader with a distinguished career in Canadian finance—on the new and recently announced Industry Strategy Council. Dr. Mona Nemer, Canada’s Chief Science Advisor, joins as an ex-officio member to provide an important perspective on science and research. The Council provides a forum for the Government to hear from and collaborate with well-respected industry leaders to assess the scope and depth of COVID-19’s impact on industries and to understand specific sectoral pressures.