Community News Update - June 14, 2023

Dear community,

My community food tables are back this weekend, starting in Marian Engel Park this Saturday, June 17th from 11AM to 1PM with plans to expand across our community through the summer!

But this can't happen without donations or volunteers. If you have non-perishable food items to donate, stop by to drop them off. For those in need of a helping hand, please come by to take what you need with no questions asked. If you want to spend your Saturday morning meeting new people while doing good for our neighbours, reply to this email to get out this weekend or another coming up!  

Sadly, the return of our food tables marks another season in which they're needed, as an increasing number of our neighbours struggling to put food on the table.

This is all while Ontario's Financial Accountability Office found that the Ford government is sitting on $22 billion in "excess funds".

22 billion dollars.

As the need for foodbanks is record-breaking and one-fifth of users are CHILDREN. While city shelters are at full-capacity and rental prices average more than $2,500 a month with no signs of slowing down. As ER waittimes are days long and nurses are driven off their feet, if not out the door already.

These are not excess funds. They are funds withheld from a province in pieces and struggling Ontarians who need to see investment in them, NOW.

Earlier today, I was honoured to join YWCA Toronto as a panelist for an important discussion on Intersectional Activism on the Rise of Transphobia & Gender-Affirming healthcare for 2SLGBTQ+ communities, alongside my colleague MPP Wong-Tam as your Ontario NDP Critic for 2SLGTBIA+ Issues, talented drag performer, Diamond Hymen, and Toronto activist, Syrus Marcus Ware.

More than ever, we cannot shy away from naming -- out loud -- what it takes to keep 2SLGBTQIA+ folks safe; from community safety to the healthcare system, and everywhere in between.

Thank you, YWCA Toronto for facilitating this conversation and your continued work towards an inclusive city for all.

Despite rising hate against queer folks & communities, there is still so much room for our joy!

This Friday (June 16), that joy is touching down at Oakwood Village Library & Arts Centre for Drag Queen Storytime with Gila Munster. From 11AM-12PM, bring your family down to enjoy the reading of 2SLGBTQIA+-themed picture books with a few musical numbers mixed in too. It's sure to be a fantastic time & fun way to engage young ones in celebrating pride and love in all its forms! 

Find out more information here.

As we continue to honour Indigenous History across the country through the month of June, join Na-Me-Res this Saturday, June 17 for a Pow Wow at Fort York to mark National Indigenous Peoples Day. The event welcomes the whole family to witness their traditional artform of dancing, drumming, and most importantly, telling a story too often untold in history books. 

Learn more about this fabulous event HERE!

Our community is changing fast and it's important that in seeing much-needed housing growth, the community its meant to benefit isn't left behind. How? By ensuring our voices are heard!

Next Tuesday, June 20 at 7PM, join Oakwood Vaughan Community Organization (OVCO), Black Urbanism TO (BUTO), K.E Residents and the Toronto Community Benefits Network (TCBN) for an open discussion on preserving the historic Black culture & affordability of Oakwood-Vaughan, and ensuring proposed developments put community needs above those of developers. 

Register or learn more about the event here.

Tomorrow is the last day to get your application in for the Queen's Park Legislative Program, giving your child a front row seat to all that goes down at Queen's Park next session.

Each year, grade 7 & 8 students are selected to take part in the coveted program, acting as aides to MPPs in the chambers, while also getting to see and learn of Ontario's parliamentary process, meet members from both sides of the aisle, and make friends from all across Ontario, Having seen many students of St. Paul's take on the important role over the years, and hear the joy and lifelong memories they & their families made, I highly encourage your child's application.

Learn more of the program and how to apply here. If you have any questions, reach out via email at [email protected] or by phone at (416) 325-7457.

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, 

Jill Andrew
Toronto-St. Paul's

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Community News Update - June 21, 2024

Dear Community,

Join me and Save Ontario's Science Centre on Sunday in Wells Hill Park to speak out against Doug Ford's scheme to move the Ontario Science Centre to Ontario Place, which has now led to the surprise closure of the Science Centre.

This benefits no one. Not the people of Toronto who are losing a beloved insitution or the 400+ employees of the OSC, many of whom will lose their jobs.

Meet us in Wells Hill Park at St Clair and Bathurst to tell Doug Ford NO.

RSVP here

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