Community News Update - May 1, 2023

Today marks International Workers' Day, or May Day; a time to celebrate the gains made through the fight of united, organized workers across the world. Gains like a minimum wage, paid time off, maximum- hours & overtime, and so many more that we enjoy today.

But these gains - our rights - can never be thought of as a given. Because they weren't. They were taken. By workers, for workers. United as workers.

And sadly, we have a government that would love to take them right back. Ford's government has maintained their hostile stance toward organized labour. Whether through Bill 124, which effectively cut workers' wages and quashed collective bargaining rights, or a callous refusal to legislate paid sick days, the PC party has proven time and again they're a poor choice for workers. Meanwhile, your Ontario NDP continues to fight for anti-scab legislation, paid sick days, and equal pay for equal work.

In answer to the age-old question "which side are you on?", it's plain as day who's on labour's. Find out why

Today is also First Responders' Day, celebrating the workers who rise to the occassion to keep us all safe and healthy.

I am deeply thankful for the heroic work and sacrifice of nurses, doctors, paramedics, healthcare workers, firefighters, emergency pilots, military and police. But I also know thanks is not enough. What each of these professions need is wages workplace conditions that reflect just how important their roles are, and the same care and respect they show our communities, day in and out, returned back to them.

Join me in thanking a first responder today!

This weekend, I joined the tenants of 55 Brownlow and allies from across St. Paul's and Toronto as they fight to secure affordable housing for all.

Like far too many buildings across our city, these residents are facing a demoviction that serves only the lucrative interests of developers. Tenants who have lived here for decades will soon be displaced all so a few wealthy business folk can make an extra buck.

Like the signs in the photos say: we have to band together to say NO to developer greed! This can only be done through the organization of everyday folks who have had enough of the rich getting richer!

Don't forget to get your ticket to see the Hillcrest Village Community Players' production of The Sound of Music!

Tickets and more info HERE.

Want to give your kid a front row seat to all that goes down at Queen's Park? Well, now's your chance through the Legislative Page Program, with applications open now until June 15, 2023.

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 t 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.

On May 27, St. Michael & All Angels Church will be hosting their Community Buzz Day!

Unsmoke Canada and The Great Outdoors Fund are offering grants for organizations to host an Unsmoke Canada cleanup event in their area, focused on collecting and recycling litter and cigarette waste.  

The grants (up to $5,000) are targeted for non-profit organizations with a connection to nature, outdoor recreation, outdoor conservation, health and wellness, volunteer engagement, and/or community service.
 
Interested organizations can apply here before May 5, 2023.

In solidarity,


Jill Andrew
Toronto-St. Paul's

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