I hope you’re keeping well and staying safe.
This Tuesday was the last day of the legislative session until the house sits again in September. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic changing how we gathered to get work done, it was a busy time.
I supported the government on critical legislation that supports Ontarians, but voted against many bills that set Ontarians back. You can review a snapshot of my voting record during this session below:
- Bill 171, Building Transit Faster Act, 2020 – Voted Yes
- Bill 175, Connecting People to Home and Community Care Act, 2020 – Voted No
- Bill 184, Protecting Tenants and Strengthening Community Housing Act, 2020 – Voted No
- Bill 187, Municipal Emergency Act, 2020 – Voted Yes
- Bill 192, Protecting Small Business Act, 2020 – Voted Yes
- Bill 195, Reopening Ontario (A Flexible Response to COVID-19) Act, 2020 – Voted No
- Bill 197, COVID-19 Economic Recovery Act, 2020 – Voted No
I also attended over 120 hours of hearings on the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs over 15 days of meetings, hearing from nearly 200 witnesses presenting to the committee about the impact of COVID-19 on various sectors of Ontario’s economy.
Some highlights from this past session:
- Called to restrict visitors in Long Term Care facilities since March 11 and urged the government to undertake an independent public inquiry;
- Urged the provincial government to apply COVID-19 top-up for those on OW and ODSP, and prevent benefit clawbacks from those on social assistance receiving CERB
- Requested direct financial support for residential tenants;
- Advocated for pandemic pay for front line workers, access to PPE, and restricting PSWs and other long term care staff to one facility in March;
- Penned an op-ed in the Toronto Star about the impact of COVID-19 in Scarborough and advocated for more localized testing;
- Wrote to the Minister of Health to advocate for funding for public health units to source & distribute masks, especially in low-income and other vulnerable populations
- Requested that the Minister of Health mitigate financial impact of dispensing fees from 30-day limitation of prescription drugs;
- Advocated for continuation of off-peak electricity prices as Ontarians continue to stay home;
- Pushed for financial supports for small businesses, particularly a multi-year repayment plan for tax deferrals for SMEs, including an option for forgiveness
- Demanded reversal of cuts to the Anti-Racism directorate and requested the Minister of Education mandate teaching of Black history in Ontario’s curriculum
- Hosted a memorial event for George Floyd and remembrance of all Black lives lost to racism and authored an op-ed in the National Post about pushing for real change for Black Canadians
- Held two roundtable consultations in Scarborough-Guildwood, one on Small Business and one on Restaurant recovery
If you have any events, updates, or stories from your neighbourhood that you’d like to share, please get in touch.
Mitzie in the Legislature
On July 21 2020, MPP Hunter asked the Minister of Education to implement clear guidelines for a safe return to school in September, including standardized health and safety guidlines, and testing and contact tracing protocols.
On July 21, Mitzie debated Bill 197, the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Act 2020, which allows Ontario’s boards of education to appoint Directors of Education that are not accredited teachers, removes requirement for Environmental Assessments for new development projects, and other sweeping changes unrelated to Ontario’s economic recovery.
Mitzie on the Move
Woburn Local Planning Meeting
On Monday, Mitzie was invited to join the Woburn Local Planning Table meeting to connect with community leaders and hear about the important work they’re doing first hand. I’d like to thank all members of the planning table for the work they’re doing with local organizations to strengthen the Woburn neighbourhood.
Scarborough-Guildwood Live Town Hall
Many Regions Move Into Stage 3 Re-Opening July 24
Most businesses and places in regions in Ontario will re-open a 12:01 am tomorrow, including York, Durham, and Hamilton. Toronto, Peel, and Windsor-Essex will remain in Stage 2.
As part of the Stage 3 reopening, Ontario will be increasing gathering limits for those regions entering the next stage to the following:
- Indoor gathering limits will increase to a maximum of 50 people;
- Outdoor gathering limits will increase to a maximum of 100 people;
- Gathering limits are subject to physical distancing requirements.
Public gathering limits apply to indoor and outdoor events, such as community events or gatherings, concerts, live shows, festivals, conferences, sports and recreational fitness activities, fundraisers, fairs, festivals or open houses. A two metre distance must still be maintained at such events. Places of worship will continue to be allowed to open at 30% of their facility capacity.
Regions remaining in Stage 2 will maintain the existing gathering limit of 10. Social circles in all stages at this point will also be kept to a maximum of 10 people province-wide, regardless of stage.
The following high-risk spaces and activities will not be allowed to re-open in Stage 3:
- Amusement parks and water parks;
- Buffet-style food services;
- Dancing at restaurants and bars, other than by performers hired by the establishment following specific requirements;
- Overnight stays at camps for children;
- Private karaoke rooms;
- Prolonged or deliberate contact while playing sports;
- Saunas, steam rooms, bath houses and oxygen bars;
- Table games at casinos and gaming establishments.
For more information on the restrictions that will remain in place during Stage 3, as well as the public health guidance necessary to keep the people of Ontario safe, visit Ontario.ca/reopen.
Drive-Thru/Walk-Thru Hot Lunch
The East Scarborough Boys and Girls Club will be providing a free hot lunch in the parking lot of their club tomorrow.
Date: Friday July 24
Location: 100 Galloway Road
Please register here.
Spelling Bee of Canada Town Hall – July 26
On July 26th at 2pm ET, I will be joining the Spelling Bee of Canada for a town hall on diversity and inclusion. I will be joining Yvonne Wyndham and Chevalier Taylor, Speech-Language Pathologists of TDSB.
The town hall will stream live on facebook here.
Amazon Now Hiring in Scarborough
Job postings for Amazon’s YYZ9 Scarborough location are now available. YYZ9 is located near Markham Road and Steeles Avenue East, and will be opening this summer. Amazon is currently hiring over 600 full-time permanent Warehouse Associates. All interested candidates can apply online by visiting Amazon.Force.com.
Next Steps Panel on Anti-Black Racism
We’re working hard to serve the community. If you have any questions, concerns, or want to bring an event or special story to our office’s attention, please get in touch by phone at 416-281-2787 or by email at email@example.com.