Community News Update - November 2, 2020

Dear Community,

We reported another 948 new cases of COVID-19 in Ontario, with many of those cases once again right here in Toronto. While the numbers are still too high, it’s important we acknowledge the sacrifices that have been made by our community to do our part to stem the spread of COVID. And today, I want to acknowledge our youth – this was a very different Halloween – and I am incredibly proud of how responsible the young people of community were this weekend.

Of course, today, global politics are being overshadowed by the American election set to take place tomorrow – but while the United States goes to the polls, there has been important events happening right here too.

A key story that has been emerging over the last couple weeks has been the McVety scandal at Queen’s Park.

For those who do not know, Charles McVety is well known for his bigoted vitriol, and for years has actively spewed transphobia, homophobia, and Islamophobia. He is also a known associate of Premier Doug Ford, who has sent him birthday greetings, and appeared at events with him on numerous occasions. He is known to be active in Conservative circles in Ontario, and he is the President of Canadian Christian College.

Key to this story is the fact that he would love the CCC to be an accredited University in Ontario, and Doug Ford has been caught attempting to help his problematic pal skip the line to accreditation. He has done this by try to expand their degree-granting powers before Postsecondary Education Quality Assessment Board (PEQAB) finished evaluating their application.

The whole thing reeks of a backroom deal between political allies – and in this case one of those allies is an avowed bigot. In response, I rose in the Legislature today to demand that the government explain this decision and denounce Charles McVety once and for all. They would not do it.
It is absolutely shameful that any elected official in Ontario – let alone the government of the day – would refuse to disavow the likes of Charles McVety. You can watch the full four-minute exchange here – and I would encourage you to watch all the way through.

The “answers” from the government are particularly revealing. If you would like to register your outrage about this scandal with the PEQAB – you can write them here.

Finally, I’m sharing with you an article that I wrote for the Caribbean Camera. The article touches on the challenges that will be faced by our society as we move through our COVID-19 recovery. The article is titled, “Ontario’s COVID-189 recovery plan must leave no one behind.”

You can read the full article here.

 In Solidarity,

Jill Andrew

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