We’d love to see lots of you Ward Twovians in the heart of the ward, Riverside Park, this Monday noon till 3. I’ll be playing some music at around 2:20 pm. A great way to connect with community. James
The Brant Community Hub Committee (BCHC), is a group of community members and non-profit organizations that want to see the development of a hub in the Brant community. The BCHC has met regularly for years to help bring the Brant hub space to reality and is inviting all members of the Brant community to fill out a survey. The survey is asking the community to “make it their Brant community hub” and asks what type of spaces, programs or services they would like to see inside and outside of a hub. The launch of the survey offers an opportunity for all of the community to provide input. Linda Beale, representing the BCHC, and former principal of Brant Avenue School, says a hub will provide much needed services and a welcoming space for everyone. “This is a fantastic idea, a hub would provide not only programs and services, but a space for everyone to enjoy,” said Beale. “Imagine a space where people of all ages can enjoy gardening, cooking classes, yoga, programs for children and seniors, the possibilities are endless”.
The survey can be accessed online at www.brantave.org . Printed copies are also available at New Life Church Victoria Road, Big Bear Convenience store on Woodlawn Road and the Brant Avenue Neighbourhood Group 35 Algonquin. The survey closes September 12, 2016. Plans are currently underway for a community open-space September 24th at the Brant Avenue School at which time the results of the survey will be made available.
Brant Community Hub Committee
Today at the city council Corporate Services Committee meeting, a motion to direct staff, in partnership with the Poverty Task Force, to investigate making the city an official supporter of a living wage, was defeated 3-2 with councillors Mackinnon, Billings and Mayor Guthrie voting against it. I believe that we missed an opportunity to take a leadership role in addressing poverty elimination.
Paying a living wage in my view should be an obligation. A civic responsibility. It should be a matter of course. It is the right thing to do. It is going to cost us money as a corporation to achieve the status of a living wage supporter, but it will cost our society more in the long run if we don’t.
We are so fortunate in Guelph. We are prosperous. We have low unemployment.We have a high quality of life. If you look a little deeper, the ‘we’ in that statement does not mean “all of us”. It means the privileged who have jobs that pay benefits, who don’t struggle every month to pay rent and buy food and look after their families. Look beneath the surface and you’ll see that our income gap is widening. People are being left behind, and when significant numbers are left behind, we cannot thrive as a community.
If you are NOT making a living wage, you are not contributing with your taxes. Instead you are drawing on services, you are COSTING the city and the province money. You are not contributing as consumers to our local businesses because you can’t afford it. You are not able to engage with your community because you are struggling, sometimes with two jobs, and you haven’t got the luxury of free time. You are not as healthy as your counterparts who ARE earning a living wage. You are not as productive in your job as those making ‘enough’. You are not as loyal to your employer, nor do you feel that you have a stake in your employer’s success.
We gain so much when we DO pay a living wage. When our workers prosper then we prosper. It’s as simple as that. There will be some who would say that we cannot afford to do this. I believe we can’t afford not to. It will be a short term burden to rectify this unjust inequity, but in the long term we will reap the rewards of this with a safer, healthier, better off and more equal populace. Really if we as employers cannot afford to pay a living wage, we shouldn’t be hiring!
It’s the right thing to do. It could be a central part of a long-term plan to address the income gap in Guelph. The example we can set to the city’s employers would have a ripple affect that would contribute immeasurably to our civic wellness. I feel positive that as a corporation we can find a way to pay a living wage to all our employees that is economically feasible, visionary and successful.
Our mayor feels that wages should be left to the ‘free market’ to sort themselves out. He says that the ‘left’ always makes the living wage a ‘moral and ethical’ issue, when it should be a strictly business decision. In this case I disagree. It is the free market that is responsible for our huge wage gap. The ‘free market’ allows executive salaries to soar, while wages of regular workers goes down. When a corporation is only driven by a desire for a greater profit, the default is to lower wages, not raise them. And yet, some innovative companies are realizing that paying a living wage pays back in many ways. We can do this in Guelph. We can set an example.
It’s the right thing to do.
- 2A/B West Loop
- 3B East Loop
- 5A Gordon
- 8 Stone Road Mall
- 10 Imperial
- 11 Willow West
- 13 Victoria Road Recreation Centre
Hi folks- Here’s an important Ward 2 issue. The Homewood has extensive development plans that includes severing off the woodland part of the property, and expanding across Delhi Street… Homewood is hosting an open house tomorrow ( Thursday June 23rd )at 7 pm. 150 Delhi Street in the gymnasium. ( Entrance at the north end of the Delhi property).
I will be there, and I hope to see some of you Ward Twovians out as well. James
Open House – Thursday June 23rd 7 – 9 pm
150 Delhi Street – Gymnasium [entrance at North end of Delhi property]