Community News Update - January 3, 2023

Dear Community, 

I hope you all had a peaceful holiday season and were able to find time to celebrate with loved ones in whatever way is meaningful to you. Happy New Year to you all! Let us continue to show up for one another with compassion and kindness. 

In this new year, my commitment to you, Ontarians, remains the same. I will continue to fight for the things that MATTER to you. It's time for REAL rent control and a ban on above guideline rent increases. We must stop attempts to privatize our healthcare system. We must demand BIG investments in education, housing, ODSP and OW, mental health, the arts, and community safety. And, I will continue to fight to save Ontario Place and the Ontario Science Centre and ensure you, Ontarians, have a say in their future. And so much more.. Whatever 2024 may bring, I look forward to all that we will accomplish together.

January 1st marked the beginning of Tamil Heritage Month. Join me in recognizing the contributions and resiliency of the Tamil community here in Toronto and beyond. 

Today, CUPE's Council of Hospital Unions reported their members are experiencing crushing workloads. The situation is taking a serious toll on their well-being. In fact, nearly HALF of workers are thinking of quitting and dread going to work every day. We've lost too many already. 

Instead of choosing to fix this crisis, this government is withholding BILLIONS of dollars that should be invested in our public health care. They've shown time a time again they're ready to make the system worse, so they can funnel money into private pockets. 

Hospital workers are ESSENTIAL workers and their well-being matters. Let us not forget this. We're fighting for REAL investment in public health care. Workers deserve the increased support. Ontarians deserve adequate, stable investment to get the care they need. 

Click here to read the full press release.

Yesterday, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives released a report that shows Canada's top CEOs make 246 times more than the average worker. 

Take this in for a second. In the first half hour of 2024, Canada's top 100 paid CEOs made more than 200 times what most Canadians will earn in a YEAR.

Folks in our communities are struggling more than ever to afford basic necessities and food bank usage across Toronto and beyond is at an all-time high. Our own St. Paul's community is feeling this struggle deeply. In late 2023, the Hillcrest Community Food Bank had to open its doors to meet the urgent need faced by our friends and neighbours. 

We must put an end to corporate greed. We need to address the root causes of poverty so nobody goes hungry. Let's make Ontario for everyone, not just the super rich. 

Click here to read the full ONDP press release. 


dance Immersion Presents the North American Premiere of
Traditional Future
by Kenya’s Fernando Anuang’a
Friday, January 19, 2024:
Pre-Show Reception – 7:15 PM
Performance & Artist Talk – 8:00 PM – 9:30 PM
Saturday, January 20, 2024:
Performance & Artist Talk – 8:00 PM – 9:30 PM
The Theatre Centre, 1115 Queen St W, Toronto, ON
General – $32.50    
Students/Arts Workers – $22.50
About the Performance:
dance Immersion presents Kenya’s Fernando Anuang’a in his internationally-renowned contemporary Maasaï dance solo, TRADITIONAL FUTURE, in North America for the first time!
With this work Fernando explores: How do we evolve tradition toward modernity without obliterating its tracks, without betraying one’s roots?
Fernando Anuang’a is an autodidact artist (self-taught dancer/choreographer) from Kenya. He is supported and inspired by Kenyan Maasaï songs, his ancestral memories, and his community’s vocal rhythmic power for his vocabulary. He is driven by a will to take tradition into the future, and continuously researches ways for Maasaï dance to live fully in this era. While tourists have exploited the image of the Maasaï jump tradition, Fernando’s practice instead infuses this cultural vertical energy with evolving Maasaï undulation gestures. For his third solo, TRADITIONAL FUTURE, he stays loyal to the Moran (Maasaï warrior) tradition as a symbolic root, while finding a deeper energy and more liberating form of self-expression to bring the tradition into the future.
This work is presented as part of dance Immersion’s 30th Anniversary Season! The performance will be accompanied by an opening night pre-show reception, and artist talks following both performances.

Applications for Black Women in Motion's Black Youth Employment Assistance Program (BYEAP) are now OPEN!

BYEAP is a 13-week, virtual employment and entrepreneurial-focused program for Black survivors of gender-based violence. BYEAP provides employment-focused training opportunities and mental health resources to support survivors in developing their employability skills, business ideas, and wellness strategies for job retention.

For general inquiries, please email us at [email protected] 

Registration for the Winter/Spring 2024 cohort closes on Thursday, January 18th, 2024, at 11:59 P.M.

Interested applicants are asked to email their resumes to [email protected] with BYEAP-2024 in the subject line.

Calling all poets of St. Paul's and beyond! The Legislative Assembly of Ontario is seeking nominees for the next Poet Laureate of Ontario. The role was created in 2019 in honour of the late Gord Downie.

The application is open until January 15, 2024. Click here for more information.

In Ontario, 1,400 people on average are waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant while thousands more are in need of a life-changing tissue donation. They are our friends, neighbours, colleagues, and, in some cases, members of our own families.

When you register as a possible organ and tissue donor, you have the potential to change the story for someone in need.
One donor can help over 80 people get back to life.
Register your consent to become an organ and tissue donor after your death and tell your family so they can help honour your wishes.
Did You Know?

  • Any Ontario resident who is 16 years or older and has an Ontario health card is eligible to register as an organ and tissue donor
  • Everyone has the potential to be an organ and/or tissue donor, regardless of age or health.
  • People from every major religion have donated. Many religions support donation or respect and individual’s choice.
  • The first and foremost concern for health care professionals is to save lives. Only when a life cannot be saved does organ and tissue donation become an option.
  • It takes two minutes to register or check your status at You can also register in person at any ServiceOntario location.

More information about the donation process, who can register, and the importance of speaking to family can be found online at

This is a reminder to get up-to-date on your COVID-19 boosters. The XBB 1.5 updated boosters are NOW available. I got mine and I encourage you to join me! 

Consult this page for information about where you can get vaccinated.

Each year across Ontario, thousands of lives are lost to overdoses. We need every level of government to prioritize implementing harm reduction strategies to combat these senseless deaths, and you can help.

As many of you know, Naloxone is a medication that reverses the effects of an opioid overdose, and these kits are FREE with training at participating pharmacies across the city. Together, we can prevent unnecessary deaths and work toward a more compassionate society that is safe safe for everyone.

Find a pharmacy with Naloxone kits near you, and make sure you can recognize the signs of an overdose.

In solidarity, 

Dr. Jill Andrew

MPP Toronto-St. Paul's

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