This Sunday is Mother’s Day. I want to wish all of our mothers and those who have been mother figures to all of us our sincerest gratitude. Like so many people, you have all been working tirelessly throughout the pandemic to support your families. We know that this has been an incredibly challenging time for mothers and families in general, who are working to balance home and work life while keeping each other safe.
On Sunday, the Ontario Government announced expanded vaccination eligibility due to an increase in vaccine supply. Those 18+ in hot spot communities are eligible to receive vaccinations at City mass immunization clinics, which can be booked through the provincial portal. Outside of hot spots, those 50+ can book at City Clinics, and pharmacies are still offering vaccinations for those over 40 this year. In addition, people who are pregnant, have some high-risk health conditions, or cannot work from home may also be eligible. You can see a detailed eligibility list here. Next week, we will see eligibility continue to expand, to include all those over 40 at City vaccination sites and more individuals with health conditions that put them at risk, or cannot work from home.
While there have been some significant challenges with receiving and distributing vaccine supply, it is reassuring to hear that the Province expects 65% of adults to have their first vaccine dose by the end of May. We must continue working to ensure that everyone eligible to get vaccinated does so.
Many in our community face language barriers and need their questions answered to become more comfortable with getting vaccinated. Last weekend, MPP Marit Stiles and I hosted a Vaccination Town Hall for those speaking Portuguese to assist the significant Portuguese population in our community. This was the third vaccination town hall we have held together, and it is always informative bringing the community and experts together to share information. This week, Dr. Vinita Dubey, Toronto’s Associate Medical Officer of Health, hosted a vaccine town hall as well. You can find the recording here.
Our office continues to work to serve you remotely. If we can be of assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us by email at [email protected] or by phone at 416.392.7012.
- Question from the Community!
- City Council Update
- The Rooster Project of Barcelos Consultations!
- Federation of South Toronto Residents’ Associations
- Sidewalk Snow Clearing Trial
- Oasis Needs YOUR Support To Support Our Neighbours
- Improving Accessibility of Committee of Adjustments Signage
- Learning Opportunities for Adults
- Call for Outdoor Wooden Furniture Donations in Oakwood Village
- Have your say on Implementing Garden Suites in Toronto - Consultations May 11-13
- Consultations for Multi-Tenant Housing
- Toronto Online Art Fair
- Jane's Walk Toronto
- Toronto Public Health issues Section 22 Order to education providers limiting in-person attendances of school-aged children
- City of Toronto opens more than 3,500 new vaccination appointments for next week
- Team Toronto COVID-19 vaccination update
- City Council unanimously approves acquisition of land for the Jane Finch Community Hub and Centre for the Arts
- City of Toronto launches pilot to capture dog waste in street litter bins
- Team Toronto vaccination Sprint Strategy getting results in 13 high priority postal codes, adding four more areas
- City of Toronto and Team Toronto partners reporting 40 per cent of eligible Torontonians now vaccinated
- The City of Toronto and its community partners continue to support the vaccination of residents without OHIP cards
Question 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 in each newsletter. Have a question you think would be good to share? Reach out to us at [email protected].
Is the Government of Canada Still Conducting the Census this year?
Yes, the Government of Canada is conducting the 2021 census. You can complete your census questionnaire online! Learn more.
Provincial Transit-Oriented Communities Program
Transit-oriented developments have an important role in creating complete communities and reducing the reliance on personal vehicles, but they have to be implemented with purpose. These developments cannot be just about funding transit projects, but it must also meet other local needs, and integrate with the existing community, rather than disrupt them.
Opting Out of E-Scooter Pilot
Toronto City Council has unanimously voted to reinforce the City’s commitment to safety and accessibility for people, especially seniors and those living with disabilities, in Toronto by voting against an opt-in to the provincial e-scooter pilot.
This decision by Council, which supports Toronto’s Vision Zero Road Safety plan and a recommendation from City staff, applies to both shared and privately-owned e-scooters and means that e-scooters will remain prohibited on public streets, bike lanes, sidewalks, pathways, trails and other public spaces.
The City staff report was based on extensive research and feedback from the accessibility community, industry professionals, local residents and businesses, as well as discussions with peer cities around the world. Council agreed with the report’s conclusion that significant accessibility barriers remain, and that safety, enforcement, insurance and liability issues are unresolved for both privately owned and rental e-scooters.
Reducing Salt Use in our Public Realm
The overuse of salt on our roadways and sidewalks from the City is having adverse effects on our waterways. To address this, Council adopted a motion to significantly cut salt use, audit our salt usage, and implement better practices to reduce our environmental impact.
PayIt Contract for Streamlining Digital Services
Toronto City Council authorized City staff to enter into a contractual agreement with PayIt Digital Government Inc. (PayIt) for the provision of digital services with payments.
Together, PayIt and the City of Toronto will design a digital experience and platform which will enable residents, businesses and visitors to Toronto to make payments to the City, starting this fall with property taxes, utility bills, and parking violations.
As part of this item, I included a motion to ensure that City Council remains in control of the fees and charges, and that any decisions with changes to accepted payment methods be reported to Council.
Rapid Housing Initiative - 222 Spadina Avenue and 877 Yonge Street
Everyone deserves a warm, safe place to call home. With the purchase of 222 Spadina and 877 Yonge through the Rapid Housing Initiative, we will create homes for 344 people and provide them access to support services this year.
These are the first two acquisitions made by the City under the Federal Rapid Housing Initiative, with Federal funding support. As a former hotel and seniors residence, these buildings can quickly be renovated of over the next few months to provide this housing to people as quickly as possible. In addition, the City has secured funds from the Province to provide support services to these tenants. Since the start of the pandemic, we have been working to transition from emergency housing solutions to more permanent homes, which we know is better for the residents, and are more cost-effective. This is a positive step that can serve as a model for housing initiatives across Toronto in the future.
The Rooster Project of Barcelos
The Municipality of Barcelos, Portugal has gifted a rooster statue to the City to be designed, painted and displayed in Little Portugal, Toronto.
Join us to help select the successful application out of the five final artists!
Federation of South Toronto Residents’ Associations
The Federation of South Toronto Residents’ Associations (FoSTRA) was founded in February, 2021. The group's boundaries include all of Ward 9 – Davenport plus Wards 4, 10, 11 (south of Bloor) and 13.
FoSTRA is a non-partisan federation of residents’ associations that collaborate to:
- Help shape the creation of good public policies at all levels of government;
- Preserve and enhance the quality of life for Torontonians;
- Promote neighborhood identity and vitality, and;
- Ensure responsible and respectful development within its boundaries.
If you are part of a local residents association and wish to connect with FoSTRA, you are invited to reach out to Don Young, Vice-Chair [email protected]
Sidewalk Snow Clearing Trial – May 10 Public Meeting
The City of Toronto has recently concluded a trial to test the use of smaller sidewalk snow plows.
The goal of the trial was to determine whether sidewalk snow clearing could be expanded to include areas of the city that do not currently receive mechanical clearing as part of the City's winter maintenance program.
The results of the trial and recommendations for the mechanical sidewalk clearing program will be presented to the Infrastructure and Environment Committee of City Council for consideration in May 2021.
On May 10 at 7:00 PM, the City will be hosting a meeting for our and surrounding communities to learn more about this trail. You can register through the link above.
Oasis Needs YOUR Support To Support Our Neighbours
We all know that the challenging news right now is that the covid-19 pandemic has left so many in Davenport hungry. The good news is that if you are reading this, YOU can help. Oasis' programs provide food, counselling, social and educational support with dignity and respect, in good times and in unprecedented ones. We are responding to serious challenges right now, including a 100% increase in visits to our weekly food bank.
By becoming a monthly donor, your tax-deductible charitable gifts are invested directly into meeting urgent needs in your community, and now is the perfect time to give. Right now, An anonymous donor is matching all gifts dollar for dollar, up to $10,000, DOUBLING your impact. To learn more, visit oasisdufferin.org/support
Improving Accessibility of Committee of Adjustments Signage
Navigating the City can be tricky, and when there is a proposed development, residents should easily know who to get in contact with. At Planning and Housing, I moved a motion to improve the look of the City’s signage to make the important contact information much more visible.
Learning Opportunities for Adults
The TDSB’s Essential Skills Upgrading (ESU) program, part of the Community Services Department, has for decades provided adults in our communities with the opportunity to improve their reading, writing, numeracy and, in recent years, digital technology skills. Our learners have many goals which cause them to seek out our program: the desire for further education, the need to find employment, the goal of apprenticeship/training and for some, the wish to have greater personal independence and more confidence to engage in their community.
Information about our program can also be found at upgrademyskills.ca
Call for Outdoor Wooden Furniture Donations in Oakwood Village
This Oakwood Village BIA needs community support to help realize an amazing opportunity to create an art inspired temporary public seating area along Oakwood Avenue during the Summer 2021 CafeTO roll-out.
The BIA and STEPS Public Art are looking for donations of outdoor wooden furniture:
- Picnic tables
- Muskoka chairs
- wooden planters
They would be happy to receive the furniture pieces as a contribution to the main street or to “borrow” the furniture pieces for June – September, as long as they can be given creative license to paint the furniture. You will recieve the "art pieces" back.
Please let my office or Aadila at Oakwood Village BIA [email protected] know by May 21, 2020 if you have any outdoor furniture to donate or lend.
Have your say on Implementing Garden Suites in Toronto - Consultations May 11-13
The Garden + Suites project is one of several studies that the City of Toronto is leading through its Expanding Housing Options in Neighbourhoods initiative. A Garden Suite is a detached housing unit, usually located in the rear yard, and is separate or detached from the main house. Garden Suites, like Laneway Suites, are generally smaller than the main house on the lot and are intended to function as a rental housing unit. Click the link above for event details. Click here to complete the survey.
Consultations for Multi-Tenant Housing
The City licenses multi-tenant houses, commonly known as rooming houses, to ensure that they are safe and well-maintained.
The City is proposing the creation of a comprehensive city-wide zoning approach and enhancements to licensing and enforcement to encourage and regulate safe, liveable, well-maintained and affordable multi-tenant houses across the city.
Toronto Online Art Fair
Toronto Outdoor Art Fair and their 400 participating artists invite you to bring the joy of art to our frontline workers while also supporting artists through Toronto Outdoor Art’s ‘Gifts of Heart’ program! Give a tax deductible charitable gift towards gift cards for art purchases. TOAF will distribute the gift cards to frontline workers to redeem during TOAF (July 2–11, 2021), with 100% of proceeds going directly to the artists! To learn more and give a gift, go to: https://torontooutdoor.art/donate/gifts-of-heart.
Jane's Walk Toronto
All of Jane's Walk Toronto 2021 walks and activities are online and one click away!
Join them in exploring Toronto neighbourhoods and communities through a wide variety of virtual walks and activities planned just for you. From movie screenings to virtual panel discussions, you can find all of their exciting 2021 programming.
May 6 - Toronto Public Health issues Section 22 Order to education providers limiting in-person attendances of school-aged children
May 6 - City of Toronto opens more than 3,500 new vaccination appointments for next week
May 6 - Team Toronto COVID-19 vaccination update
May 5 - City Council unanimously approves acquisition of land for the Jane Finch Community Hub and Centre for the Arts
May 4 - City of Toronto launches pilot to capture dog waste in street litter bins
May 3 - Team Toronto vaccination Sprint Strategy getting results in 13 high priority postal codes, adding four more areas
May 1 - City of Toronto and Team Toronto partners reporting 40 per cent of eligible Torontonians now vaccinated
April 30 - The City of Toronto and its community partners continue to support the vaccination of residents without OHIP cards