There are many issues in Ward 5 and in the City of London that I feel very passionately about. If elected to London’s City Council, I will view all issues before me through three lenses:
– How does this issue affect the residents in Ward 5?
– How does this issue affect London’s most vulnerable?
– How does this issue fit in to the broader picture to ensure that London is a vibrant, thriving city?
Some of the issues I feel most strongly about are:
The city needs to work with both private market landlords and social housing providers to ensure that we fill the gap in London’s available affordable housing. While efforts must be made to increase affordable housing at a local level, we must also understand that London’s affordable housing crisis is really an income security crisis. As a member of London’s City Council, I commit to being a voice of advocacy for those who are struggling. I will work with our local provincial representatives to ensure that the provincial government understands where the holes are in our social safety nets and I will do everything I can to push for change
Snow is not new to London. Here in Southwestern Ontario, we get heavy snowfall on a regular basis. We have had ample time to develop and implement adequate snow removal measures and yet, this past winter, both myself and my wife had to take days off from work as we couldn’t get off of our street due to the heavy snowfall. My wife and I are lucky in that we both have full-time, salaried positions. For those who work part-time, non-salaried positions, a snow day is a day without pay. For those who are elderly and those with mobility challenges, unplowed sidewalks are treacherous and serve as barriers to public transportation and full participation in all that London has to offer. I will work with council to adjust our snow removal budget and processes to make sure that we are getting plows on our roads and sidewalks sooner.
Battling the opioid crisis
Having spent years working as an addiction and housing focused street outreach worker, I am well acquainted with London’s opioid crisis. City Council needs to continue to support progressive measures including needle exchange programs, and supervised consumption sites. We must work in collaboration with health care providers and Police Services to ensure that London is a place where addiction is really understood and is treated as a public health issue with appropriate health care interventions while also ensuring that the public is not negatively impacted. I will work with our partners in the provincial government to ensure that we have adequate and affordable mental health and substance use treatment options.