I would like to begin, as I did last week, by extending our support and thoughts to the people of Ukraine and all residents of Ukrainian descent in our City as the situation in that country continues to be dire as a result of the Russian invasion. The images we see of the terrible impacts of this invasion on the people of Ukraine are heart-wrenching and we all stand with them and commit to supporting them in every way that we can.
With the weather improving and Spring just a few days away, we are all looking forward to a more familiar and normal Spring and Summer season in our City.
As part of our re-opening, on March 4th the Mayor announced the return of major festivals and events to Toronto this spring and summer! Our City is home to many festivals and cultural events which help make our city such a lively and exciting place to call home. After two years of either having significantly reduced events or gatherings online, we are all looking forward to the return of these cherished celebrations including the St. Patrick's Day Parade, the Pride Parade and the many other local events and festivals in our community. I would note that one very welcome event returning this year is my annual Davenport Easter Egg Hunt which will take place on Saturday, April 16th, 2022 – more details to follow in further e-newsletters.
Yesterday on March 9th, the Ontario government announced that on March 21st, it would be lifting masking requirements for most settings, in areas under its jurisdiction. Under the new regulations, masks will continue to be required in high-risk and congregate settings including public transit, long-term care and retirement homes, health-care settings, congregate care settings, shelters and jails under provincial regulation. I have provided further information on this announcement below.
Following the province's announcement, at the Toronto City Council meeting, City Council decided to amend the Mask Bylaw, so that it expires when the Ontario Government lifts provincial masking requirements. These decisions, as always, were based on the thorough and sound advice of our Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Eileen De Villa, who has provided outstanding guidance and leadership to the City over the course of this pandemic. Residents can learn more about the decision here.
On Tuesday, March 8th, the world came together to celebrate International Women's Day. International Women's Day is a day to celebrate the incredible accomplishments of women and recognize that there is more work to be done to reach true equality for women in all parts of the world. As part of celebrations for International Women's Day, I had the pleasure of welcoming players from Canada's Women's National Hockey team to City Hall along with the Mayor and Council colleagues. In speaking to these incredible athletes who represented Canada on the world stage, and who won the gold medal at the Olympics, I was reminded of how inspiring they are to women and girls across our country. I also briefly held one of the gold medals and I can report that they are very impressive!
That same day, I had the honour of speaking at the Hockey Canada Dreams Come True event at Nathan Phillips Square. The Dreams Come True program is an initiative operated by the Hockey Canada Foundation that provides families with the support and resources to allow their children to play hockey. As a result of the generosity of this program, 25 children from across our city received free hockey equipment, including Andreas from our Davenport community!
They say there's nothing more Canadian than hockey. I think that there's nothing more Canadian than giving children the opportunity to play hockey and try new things to which they otherwise might not have access. That's exactly what the Dreams Come True program does. It was an honour to be a part of this event, and I thank everyone who helped make it possible.
I want to let residents know that on March 24th, the Toronto Public Library will be hosting a virtual public meeting for the Perth/Dupont Library relocation and renovation. The Perth/Dupont branch is set to move to 299 Campbell Ave, a new site just 350 meters down the street from its current location, and will be expanded to include collaborative meeting places, interactive children's spaces, and more. I have provided more information on this below.
I also want to let residents know that on March 29th from 6:30 - 8:30pm, the City will be hosting a virtual community consultation for the 1799 St. Clair Avenue West planning application. This meeting will give residents the opportunity to learn more about this proposed development, and provide feedback to City staff. I have provided further information and a registration link below.
Finally, I want to inform residents that today the City announced that more than 70 COVID-19 vaccination clinics will be operating throughout the city during March Break. This is a part of Team Toronto's hyper-local, equity-focused vaccination strategy to eliminate any remaining barriers to vaccine accessibility for residents in our City. I have provided more information on this below.
As always please do not hesitate to contact my office if we can be of any assistance. You can contact my office by email at [email protected] or by phone at 416.392.7012.
Table of Contents
- Province Lifting Masking Requirements for Certain Settings on March 21st, and City Council Approves Changes to Public Health Measures
- More than 70 COVID-19 Clinics To Operate During March Break
- City of Toronto distributes $4.5 million in grants to support equitable vaccine uptake
- Walk-ins Continue At Any City Clinic for Youth and Adults
- City's COVID-19 Dashboard Continues To Be Updated
City & Local Updates
- Children from across Toronto Received Free Hockey Equipment Through the Dreams Come True Program
- Meeting Canada's Olympic Gold Medal Women's Ice Hockey Team on International Women's Day
- Toronto History Museum Launches New HerStory Content for International Women's Day
- City Announces Return of In-Person Events
- Virtual Public Meeting on March 24th for Perth/Dupont Library Relocation
- Virtual Community Consultation on March 29th for 1799 St. Clair Ave West Planning Application
- Useful Eviction Handbook For Residents
- City Offering Free Business Webinars
Recent Municipal Announcements
- March 2 - City of Toronto distributes $4.5 million in grants to support equitable vaccine uptake
- March 3 - City of Toronto immunization clinics now offering appointments for school-based vaccines for grade 7 to 12 students
- March 4 - Mayor Tory announces major in-person events to return to Toronto this spring and summer
- March 4 - City of Toronto Council and committee meetings transitioning to a hybrid model with open public galleries starting March 22
- March 7 - Mayor Tory proclaims Black Mental Health Week in Toronto
- March 8 - Toronto History Museums launches new HerStory content for International Women’s Day
- March 9 - City of Toronto COVID-19 mask bylaw to expire when most provincial masking regulations are lifted on March 21
- March 10 - More than 70 COVID-19 vaccination clinics will be open during March Break
- March 10 - City of Toronto ready to resume full slate of fun, safe March Break activities
Province Lifting Masking Requirements for Certain Settings on March 21st, and City Council Approves Changes to Public Health Measures
On March 9th, the Ontario Government announced that on March 21st, it will be lifting masking requirements for most settings with some exceptions.
The exceptions where masks will still be required include:
- public transit
- health care settings
- long-term care homes
- and congregate care settings.
Residents can learn more about the Ontario government's announcement here.
Also, yesterday during the Special City Council session, Council voted to follow the guidance and advice of our City's Medical Officer of Health and bring to an end the mask mandate that has been in place since the beginning of the pandemic. Residents can learn more about this here.
The item before Council included recommendations as well as a report detailing the basis upon which these recommendations were made. The full City Council item can be found at this link including the Medical Officer's report.
More than 70 COVID-19 Clinics To Operate During March Break
As a part of Team Toronto's hyper-local, equity-focused vaccination strategy, today the City announced that more than 70 COVID-19 vaccination clinics will be operating throughout the City during March Break. These clinics will be in the convenient locations where residents are, including camps, schools, and libraries, and many of these clinics are family-friendly and youth-focused to create a positive vaccination experience for participants.
All five of the City-run clinics will also continue to operate. Residents can click this link to learn more.
City of Toronto distributes $4.5 million in grants to support equitable vaccine uptake
On March 2nd, Mayor John Tory announced that the City will be distributing $4.5 million to support grants for COVID-19 vaccine engagement.
The grant funding, which will be in place through July 1, 2022, will go toward outreach and engagement activities in neighbourhoods and communities that have been hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic.
More information can be found here.
Walk-ins Continue At Any City Clinic for Youth and Adults
City Immunization Clinics continue to accept walk-in visits for COVID-19 vaccinations while continuing with booked appointments. All five City immunization clinics are also offering walk-in third dose COVID-19 vaccinations for youth aged 12 to 17. Youth are eligible for a third dose if approximately six months (168 days) have passed since their second dose.
City's COVID-19 Dashboard Continues To Be Updated
The City of Toronto maintains an updated dashboard of statistics and reports on COVID-19 numbers in our City, including a case count map. It is easy to review information on the dashboard which outlines what is occurring in our City during the pandemic. The data is updated regularly.
The dashboard can be found at this link.
The Dreams Come True program is an initiative operated by the Hockey Canada Foundation that provides families with the support and resources to allow their children to play hockey! To date, more than 1,400 children have received equipment through this program, and it has helped make Canada's national sport more accessible to many across the country.
On Tuesday, March 8th, I joined the Hockey Canada Foundation, Toronto Civic Employees Union Local 416, The Toronto Police Foundation, and my Council colleagues, in congratulating 25 children from across our city who received free hockey equipment through this program.
Our Davenport Community's own Andreas also received equipment through this program, and joined me for an interview with CP24 after the event. For his first time on TV, Andreas was a natural! Congratulations to Andreas, and to all the children who received hockey equipment through this program.
Community members who are interested to learn more about the Dreams Come True program can click here.
On Tuesday afternoon, during International Women's Day, I had the special privilege of welcoming players from Canada's National Women's Ice Hockey Team to Toronto City Hall!
The Women's National Ice Hockey Team made Canada proud at the 2022 Olympics when they won gold for Team Canada. This was an incredible achievement, and they are an inspiration to women and girls across our country.
International Women's Day has been taking place since 1911, and each year we celebrate the significant advancements we have made as a society and globally in the effort to ensure equality for all women.
We know that in many parts of the world, progress remains elusive and while we celebrate our achievements, we are reminded that there remains much work to be done.
In celebration of International Women's Day, on March 8th the Toronto History Museums launched new content for the City's HerStory program, highlighting the stories of incredible women who are making important contributions to Toronto’s history.
Residents can learn more about the Toronto History Museums, and their HerStory program here.
Now that restrictions are lifting and the City is opening back up, I'm glad to inform residents that on March 4th, Mayor John Tory announced the return of major festivals and events to Toronto this spring and summer.
This means that residents will be able to enjoy many of the local festivals and get-togethers that help to make our city lively and enjoyable! Events like the St. Patrick's Parade, Doors Open Toronto, the Pride Parade and the TD Jazz Festival will be returning throughout the spring and summer, and will help reignite the cultural vibrancy of our city!
And of course, we are all looking forward to all the wonderful local events and festivals we have missed in our community during these challenging two years.
Residents can learn more about the return of festivals here.
As part of the redevelopment of the 299 Campbell Avenue site in the Junction Triangle, I consulted with the community and worked to secure a new Toronto Public Library (TPL) branch to be housed in the base of this building – providing a brand new and significantly enlarged library for our neighbourhood.
The Perth-Dupont branch is currently located at 1589 Dupont Street, and is one of the smallest libraries in the entire TPL system. This expansion, and the relocation to the new site just a couple of blocks down the street will result in a significantly larger library for our community, growing to approximately 10,000 square feet.
When I think back to my first term in office as Davenport City Councillor, there was talk at City Hall of closing libraries and reducing library hours. At the same time those discussions were happening, nearly 100 people in the former Ward 18 (now Ward 9) came together to support expanding the Perth-Dupont branch in our community. Together with many involved community members of the Junction Triangle Library Expansion Committee, we have worked towards achieving this important milestone and should be proud of how far we have been able to come.
The TPL has embraced this expansion project and is supporting this innovative approach to renovate and expand other libraries all across the system. I am very excited that the project is now close to completion. I’m sure many who worked on this share my enthusiasm. Opening of the new branch is tentatively scheduled for spring/summer 2023.
The Toronto Public Library will be hosting an information session on March 24th from 6:30pm to 8:00pm for the planned relocation and renovation of the Perth/Dupont Library branch. Interested residents can register for the virtual information session here.
The City will be hosting a community consultation on March 29th from 6:30 to 8:30pm for the planning application at 1799 St. Clair Avenue West.
This meeting will give residents the opportunity to learn more about this proposed development, and provide feedback to City staff. I encourage residents to participate.
Interested residents can register for the community consultation here.
The City of Toronto provides a useful handbook for renters who's landlords may be trying to evict them. The guide provides information on how to identify if you are in the eviction process, and helps you identify actions you can take at each step of the eviction process.
The Eviction Prevention Handbook, and other tenant resources can be found here.
The City of Toronto offers a number of free webinars year-round for entrepreneurs and small business owners! These virtual webinars and workshops provide information and advice on a number of important aspects of business management, including small business financing, social media marketing, and much more.
Visit this webpage to learn more about and register for the different webinars that are available.