My Priorities as Your MP

Community Safety.

Wherever I go in our riding, residents single out community safety as their top concern.

Toronto Police crime statistics rank Toronto Centre (51st Division) as the most dangerous neighbourhood in Toronto. Since 2015, there has been little progress on making our community safer. In fact, every single major crime indicator – Break and Enter, Auto Theft, Assault, Robbery, Sexual Violation, Theft Over and Murder – has significantly increased during this period. 2019 is only half over, and crime rates have already exceeded the totals for the entire of 2018.

Toronto Centre is in the grips of an opioid, housing and affordability crisis that has left all residents vulnerable. Addicted residents are at risk, due to a lack of adequate services and support, while many residents are left feeling like prisoners in their homes and very unsafe in their community.

Community safety is a top priority of Toronto Centre residents, so it must be a top priority for their representatives. We cannot afford for our Member of Parliament to be a bystander. Instead, our Member should be a true partner to the community, working with residents and organisations and ready to deploy federal resources to support made-in-Toronto Centre solutions. Unfortunately, our current Member of Parliament has failed to provide leadership on community safety or to prioritise the issue in any meaningful way. As a result, crime continues to get worse and our neighbourhoods remain unsafe.

Toronto Centre desperately needs a comprehensive Community Safety Action Plan that addresses the root causes of crime and that includes housing, employment and a 360-degree Drug Strategy that covers harm reduction, treatment, recovery and mental health. Toronto Centre residents understand what their community needs and can be trusted to create a plan that will work for residents. Nevertheless, an effective Toronto Centre Community Safety Action Plan will require every level of government to get behind it and a Member of Parliament that will fight to see it implemented.

Affordability for All.

Toronto has become one of the most unaffordable cities in the world to live in. The price of renting or purchasing a home has skyrocketed, the cost of living has shot up and wages have not kept up. Toronto Centre residents have listed affordability as a top concern: people should not have to choose between paying their rent and feeding themselves or their children.

Current federal and provincial housing strategies are simply not ambitious enough to cope with the scale of the unaffordability problem. While the federal government has introduced a National Housing Strategy, even the Parliamentary Budget Officer is unconvinced that the strategy will reduce housing need and it actually reduces the level of targeted funding for lower-income households. The City of Toronto still has not adopted a definition of affordable housing that accurately reflects the reality of affordability in Toronto.

The Green Party believes that funding for social housing needs to be dramatically increased and the federal government must play a central role in this. CMHC programs must be directed to the communities most in need and fast-tracked to provide homes for people at risk. The Green Party will also work to establish a Guaranteed Liveable Income, to ensure no Canadian falls below an income level that is necessary to live with dignity.

The Climate Emergency.

Our planet is in a Climate Emergency. The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has said that each nation must contribute to ensuring that the global average temperature does not rise more than 1.5°C over pre-Industrial Revolution levels. If not, we risk runaway global warming and the potential extinction of most species on earth, including humans. Holding to 1.5°C is not negotiable; it is do or die.

Mission: Possible – Our National Climate Action Plan

The federal government needs to adopt an ambitious Climate Action Plan and the programs proposed by the Liberals, NDP and the Conservatives will not get us where we need to go. The Green Party has an ambitious plan to meet Canada’s obligations.

“Mission: Possible” is the most comprehensive Canadian Action Plan to combat the Climate Emergency. Our Plan will:

  • Reduce Green House Gas emissions by 60% by 2030 (against 2005 levels)
  • Achieve zero emissions by 2050
  • Modernise and “green” Canada’s east-west electricity grid
  • End foreign oil imports
  • Ban fracking
  • Maintain carbon pricing

Our plan guarantees a just transition to a Green economy that leaves no Canadian behind and that creates millions of well-paying jobs, working in partnership with Canada’s Indigenous peoples and every part of our national community.

The Green Party also supports the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, 17 interconnected targets, covering issues such as poverty, climate change and peace and justice.

Our Green Plan for Toronto Centre

Toronto Centre residents deserve clean air, abundant green spaces and investment in green infrastructure. While everyone suffers from the effects of climate change, low income communities suffer the most. As an urban riding that is home to several economically deprived communities, Toronto Centre is particularly at risk. The Green Party has a plan for that.

Better Transportation: The Greens will reinvest in public transportation infrastructure to make it convenient, safe, comfortable and affordable. Our green growth plan includes upgraded municipal transportation budgets so that cities can afford efficient light rail transit, coordinated buses, bike lanes and pedestrian pathways.

Green Investing: We will restore the EcoENERGY program and provide federal loans for retrofits to homeowners; offer rebates for purchasing energy efficient vehicles; dedicate $250 million/year for five years for a low-income retrofit grant program; and provide refundable tax credits for all energy retrofit costs.

Support for community green projects: The Greens will provide grants of 50% of the cost of solar thermal roofs or walls including solar hot water and promote Green Mortgage loans for the remainder of the cost. We will establish free energy audits and provide GST credits for all materials used in buildings that are LEED® Silver or better. We will also promote rooftop and community gardens and the cultivation of green urban space for agriculture in cities.