• Save Independent Facilitation
    Email your MPP here: https://act.leadnow.ca/tell-your-mpp-support-independent-facilitation/ People with developmental disabilities and their families are just learning their life-line to inclusion is about to be severed by our provincial government “for the people.” There has been a terrible misrepresentation of what Independent Facilitation is and what this $3.1 million program means to our most vulnerable neighbours and their families. So let me try to explain. Imagine you're the loving parent of a child with a moderate-to-severe developmental disability. Imagine the almost all-consuming amount of stress this has caused you - first, the diagnosis, the battery of tests and appointments, wanting nothing more than a clean bill of health for your loved one, the anxiety of not knowing how severe it will be, then the crushing feeling of all the expectations you had around family life and raising children slipping away. Imagine that coupled with getting to experience the sweetest little person; the unmitigated joy you see in their smile and eyes when you make them laugh with delight. This person, who you know better than anyone, yet who, chances are, will not be known in this way by anyone else. Imagine the struggles of raising this child through school, where kids can be so needlessly mean, especially to those more vulnerable in the social pecking order than them. Imagine the tears, the frustrations, you have tried your absolute best to help guide them through, as they encounter situation after situation where they are told they are different, where they are made to feel unwelcome, where they don't feel like they belong. Imagine watching them struggling to express their feelings to you, wondering why they don't have friends. Imagine watching them slowly recede into isolation, spending time only with you, or by themselves. Imagine wondering - will they ever experience a romantic kiss? Will they ever know love aside from you? Imagine your heart breaking as you realize the thing you want to provide to them most - a sense of community, the joys of companionship - is beyond your ability to build by yourself. Imagine the terror that keeps you up on some nights, as you consider what life might be like for them once you are dead. Once the one person who knows them, their champion, is gone. Imagine the concern you feel, not knowing how they will fend for themselves. The vast majority of connections your loved one has developed inside the medical system over the years have been largely transactional, with no real depth of relationship with any of their health care providers. Sure, they know your child's name, and can tell you up and down about their condition, but that's about all they know. Imagine everyone telling your son or daughter what they can't do, what they won't be, and informing them what their very limited options are. For so many families, this is not imagination. This is heart-wrenching reality. Now, imagine a person who comes and visits with your child weekly. Who forms a relationship with them. Who gets to know them, as an individual, not just as a collection of conditions. A person who is geared towards helping your child realize the skills and talents that they do have, that they can use to create meaning and happiness in their life. A person who will work to help build friendships and community up around your child; a network of care that will persist well into the future after you are gone. A person who walks beside your loved one, helping them find their own voice, to be able to make their own choices. A person who listens, and helps them feel understood. A person who can help bear the burden and can offer you a break. A person who, beyond the health of your child, cares about their empowerment. Finding a job, joining a club, volunteering - these are all outwards signs of the real change that is happening; the creation of social networks and instances where the individuals can use their talents to give back and feel valued. To feel like they belong. Independent Facilitation also eases many downstream systemic burdens - on the health care system, housing, missed work for parents. The increased quality of life resulting from reduced family stress, as well as the self-directed aspect of helping people find their voices to make their own choices, is hard to overstate. One of the biggest benefits of Independent Facilitation, above and beyond what is provided through the existing institutional approach, is the impact it has on depression and loneliness. Studies, focused on greater society, have correlated depression and isolation with negative health outcomes – which means more economic burden. In a community that is arguably the most isolated, many people for the first time had someone to walk with them and help guide them through how to structure a meaningful, connected life. It is very human to want to feel useful, to have purpose. Independent Facilitation helps individuals who otherwise would have been overlooked to determine theirs, structure the necessary steps needed to achieve it and empower them to actually move themselves forward. This is prime space for Ontario, and Canada, to exhibit leadership; how we treat our most vulnerable populations says more about our culture, province and country than any number of political slogans ever could. It is a crying shame to see our provincial leaders effectively turning Ontario's back on a significant portion of our own. Honestly, I can't help but feel that if Doug Ford had a family member with a developmental disability, he would get it. He would be Independent Facilitation's biggest champion instead of being the guy who is about to drop the axe on the service.
    4,729 of 5,000 Signatures
    Created by Jamie Moffat
  • Defend Students: Tell Ford to Back Off OSAP
    Ford just made slashing cuts to the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). This will put higher education out of reach for tens of thousands of Ontarians. Ford's legislation will also end the six month grace period for repaying student loans, which means students could graduate in April and receive a bill for hundreds of dollars in May - before they’ve even secured a job interview. Doug Ford is balancing his budget on the backs of students - mere months after handing billions in tax breaks to his well-connected buddies. We have to stand up for students, and put a halt to this short-sighted, fiscally irresponsible and cruel cut to students' futures. Students have been organizing rallies, and there's another one this Friday. If we get this petition as big as we can before that, we can show Ford that students won't allow this. Tell Doug Ford and the Education Minister - immediately save and fully reinstate OSAP.
    1,873 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Leadnow Canada
  • Immediately increase shelter capacity and declare homelessness a state of emergency in Toronto
    URGENT: Tomorrow Toronto City Council will be debating whether or not to declare a state of emergency to trigger immediate action on the homeless crisis affecting our city. Declaring a state of emergency will take people off the streets and help save lives. We’re partnering with Progress Toronto to deliver the petition to councillors tomorrow, but to convince them to support it, we have to collect as many signatures as possible right now. Sign before it’s too late. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Recently, the City of Toronto began issuing eviction notices to homeless people who seek shelter from fierce winter weather in tents under the Gardiner. These notices are delivered under the guise of “no camping” by-laws and force people to either hide from authorities or attempt to navigate a shelter system that lacks the resources to accommodate them. [1] With severe winter weather predicted this weekend, forcing these people out of their tents into unsafe and over-capacity shelter system that may or may not even be able to take them in is cruel, inhumane, and dangerous. The city of Toronto must take immediate action to expand shelter capacity, and halt tent evictions until capacity is more than adequate to provide safe, secure shelter for those in need. All too often, these are the people who are left behind. A flood of public pressure from a massive petition will let Mayor Tory and City Council know that this issue isn’t going to fade away, and could force a change in policy. Source: [1] https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/city-giving-homeless-living-in-tent-cities-2-weeks-to-vacate-structures-1.4254610
    7,826 of 8,000 Signatures
    Created by Leadnow Canada
  • Help Undocumented Citizens Living In Canada
    "There is no such thing as a model or ideal Canadian... A society which emphasizes uniformity is one which creates intolerance and hate... What the world should be seeking, and what in Canada we must continue to cherish, are not concepts of uniformity but human values: compassion, love and understanding" - Pierre Trudeau
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    Created by Human Justice
  • Smoking in public is a devastating trend- Please BAN it.
    Millions of non-smokers in our country, particularly in Toronto city are suffering every day due to unscrupulous smokers around all public places. These smokers interpret that "Law prohibits only smoking within 9 meters from a building entrance". Thus they claim they are legally permitted to smoke anywhere else. This is in addition to some who violate all existing laws and they smoke right at the entrance. Children at Risk A recent law revision has prohibited smoking near schools and play grounds. But that was a too short-sighted addition. Please note that, the same children get exposed to smoking on their way home at side walks, bus tops, pedestrian crossings, parking lots, walkways, public transit, and inside own dwelling units. Attention is requested to the menace of unscrupulous smoking in public places, which is causing health hazards to general public through passive smoking effect. While I appreciate the smoke-free Ontario regulation and similar laws across the country exist,evidently they are found to be not reaping the desired benefits. The rule that bans smoking within 9 meters from the entrance of any building, appears to have been miss-interpreted as if it just irritates the building. Any reasonably sensible person can understand that such rule is to avoid passive smoking-effect on other innocent nonsmokers passing by. But most smokers are seen smoking at a couple meters away from the entrance, if not at the entrance/ inside the confined area itself, and mostly right in the middle of other non-smokers by-standing / walking. Such violations are extremely high in crowded cities like Toronto / GTA and probably in other larger cities too . The trend might be proportionately less in other small cities. In either case the damages that would cause are enormous. Consequences of smoking in public: 1. One smoker could cause health hazard to multitude of non-smoking public through passive smoking. 2. Suffocating smell that linger when a smoker travels in a crowded transit vehicle/elevator, which cause all others around sick 3. Cause slow premature death to innocent passive smokers, including young children/ infants and elderly (senior citizens) 4. Huge burden on the exchequer via additional health / medical budget. 5. Instances of children picking up butts from those thrown by others. The teens may not legally get it from stores, but get free butts from the side-walk. 6. Makes the city dirty with butts all around. 7. Create an unhealthy community, and an addicted generation. 8. Fire hazard due to un-extinguished butts being thrown around high-rise buildings. 9. Electronic cigarette and vapes too cause equal health hazard as cigarettes
    3 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Abraham Varughese
  • Tell Parks Canada to follow all 17 recommendations from UNESCO to save Wood Buffalo National Park
    NOW until December 10th is our time to offer feedback. UPDATE- FEEDBACK PERIOD HAS BEEN EXTENDED UNTIL DECEMBER 14. Wood Buffalo National Park was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983, in part because of its great concentration of migratory wildlife; its vast inland delta, the Peace-Athabasca Delta; and the fact that it is home to many endangered species such as the Whooping Crane. The park encompass an area larger than the country of Switzerland. The UNESCO designation means that this place has Outstanding Universal Value, and places it among such global treasures as the Great Barrier Reef and the Pyramids. It is also the traditional homeland of 11 Indigenous groups. In 2014, the Mikisew Cree First Nation petitioned UNESCO to add Wood Buffalo National Park to their list of World Heritage Sites in Danger. UNESCO agreed there were serious issues in the park, and gave Parks Canada 17 recommendations in order to keep Wood Buffalo off the list. Parks Canada has released a draft Action Plan for public feedback. At this time, there is no plan to address Recommendation 4 - to conduct a full social and environmental impact assessment of the impacts of the Site C Dam on Wood Buffalo National Park. We understand that much work has taken place with the 11 Indigenous groups within the Park, which we respect; however, we feel meaningful engagement with the Canadian public has not occurred. The sustained integrity of the Outstanding Universal Value of Wood Buffalo is a concern for all Canadians. Unfortunately, the Action Plan falls short in responding to all 17 recommendations from UNESCO’s reactive monitoring mission. A significant shortfall is the failure to respond to Recommendation 4 – “conduct, in line with ICUN World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, and environmental and social impact assessment of the Site C Project, and if moved forward, any hydropower projects potentially affecting the Outstanding Universal Value of the Property” (p. 43). By failing to meet this recommendation, Parks Canada undermines efforts to successfully address the threats to Wood Buffalo National Park. Water quality and quantity are the key underlying challenges to the other 16 recommendations identified. From UNESCO’s 2017 Report on the Peace-Athabasca Delta: …Site C…has so far not been assessed in terms of its impacts of the already altered Peace-Athabasca Delta even though the latter is both a fundamental contributor for the justification of World Heritage and Ramsar status, and home to several Aboriginal Peoples.   …the 2014 federal environmental assessment of the Site C project didn’t examine the impacts on the delta because the projects proponent, BC Hydro claimed there would be ‘no detectable effect…the federal panel restated BC Hydro’s position, ‘without providing a conceivable technical rationale for this conclusion’… Parks Canada claims that, “previous assessments are sufficient”, despite presenting evidence at the Joint Review Panel that stated Site C would have a negative impact on the Peace-Athabasca Delta and despite continued calls from Indigenous groups for the discontinuation of the project. You can get more information and request a copy of the Draft Action Plan here: https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/nt/woodbuffalo/info/SEA_EES/action/engagement
    2,981 of 3,000 Signatures
    Created by Amy Lusk Picture
  • Tell Doug Ford: don't scrap critically important protection for marginalized kids in Ontario
    Doug Ford just scrapped the Office of the Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth, which is responsible for making sure kids in the welfare system and other institutions are protected from abuse. This will leave the most vulnerable people imaginable -- children accessing public services, children with disabilities, Indigenous children -- without independent oversight, advocacy and protection that they need. [1] This office plays an incredibly important role in the lives of young people and those who care for them in this province. It ensures that young people, and especially those living in the care of public institutions such as child welfare and youth justice, have a voice in decisions that affect their lives. The discontinuation of this office and amalgamation with the Ombudsman office will inevitably lead to its serious reduction of capacity and expertise to help young people who desperately need this support. The Ombudsman of Ontario does not have the experience, expertise and participatory methods in working with young people in the areas of child welfare, child & youth mental health and youth justice sectors. Not only do young people benefit tremendously from this Office's work, professionals across the country regularly highlight this Office's leadership role in the province and Canada. And Ford’s doing it to fund corporate handouts. He’s claiming there's no money for it, but with millions in tax cuts to corporations and the wealthy, that’s more than a bit rich. We can’t allow him to strip children of their rights and their safety. We saw that after massive backlash about the Ford government moving to debate whether to remove gender identity from school curriculums, he backtracked and shut it down. [2] If we show them that the majority of people in Ontario won’t tolerate these absolutely callous cuts to children’s safety with a massive petition, he could reverse again. They could be packing up the office of Provincial Advocacy for Children and Youth any day now. Will you add your name before it’s dismantled? [1] https://www.thestar.com/opinion/contributors/2018/11/19/eliminating-the-ontario-child-advocates-office-a-mistake.html [2] https://toronto.citynews.ca/2018/11/19/ford-gender-identity-debate/
    837 of 1,000 Signatures
    Created by Tara Collins
  • Ontario's Police Raids, Illicit Dispensaries, and Precarious Labour.
    Dispenasry workers face fines, arrest, and up to 2 years in jail for the crime of working (and paying taxes) in a grey/black market venture. Please help workers caught in this regrettable, structural failure under Ontario's Conservative Government, and its failed MJ distribution scheme. More arrests, this time in Ottawa and Windsor, maybe Leo Lucier could get you some respondents: https://sputniknews.com/us/201811091069661388-cannabis-shops-raided-ontario/ TO police raided 5 dispensaries, 19 October: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/cannabis/article-toronto-police-raid-and-shut-down-five-marijuana-dispensaries-vow-to/ 6 arrested in Hamilton, Oct. 25: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/hamilton/hamilton-police-execute-warrant-georgia-peach-cannabis-dispensary-1.4880436) And four more arrests Tues, 6 Nov, in Essex, ON: https://theprovince.com/news/local-news/opp-lay-cannabis-act-charges-after-raid-on-pot-shop-in-essex/wcm/f65698d7-ea66-49b3-8a03-23220ced72ed
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    Created by clayton mccann
  • #iammoreTO
    Racialized youth are disproportionately impacted by Canada’s criminal justice system. Racial disparities exist within Canada’s policing, courts, and correction services but are rarely discussed. According to Statistic Canada’s (2018) correctional statistic from 2016-2017 Indigenous youth account for 46% of incarcerated youth. Black Canadians are one of the fastest growing populations in federal prisons. Our justice system is rooted in injustice and continues to criminalize, victimize, and marginalize racialized youth. As a nation we need to move past punitive approaches to youth criminality and towards holistic approaches. Racialized youth deserve a justice system that is inclusive, equitable, and truly just!
    1 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Demi Veselinovic
  • Sindhi Cultural Day in Alberta
    To celebrate cultural identity of 7000 years old Indus Valley civilization
    409 of 500 Signatures
    Created by Mashhood Qazi
  • Keep your promise to fund public transit in Ontario
    107 municipalities receive funding through the Provincial Gas Tax Program. The Provincial Government cancelled an estimated $364 million per year in promised funding to these municipalities without notice in their 2019 Provincial Budget[1], putting our public transit service at risk[2]. Municipal public transit in Ontario has been underfunded since 1998 when the Harris government cut the fifty per cent subsidy of the net operating costs of municipal transit agencies [3]. Instead agencies have received a much smaller amount of funding through the Province’s gas tax program since 2004 [4]. To make life affordable, we need good public transit. We need more funding for our municipal public transit systems, so we can have lower fares and better service. The Provincial Government has quietly announced that they are going back on their promise to honour the previous government's commitment to double funding for municipal transit [5][6]. This increase in funding is critical in supporting a growing number of municipal transit systems across Ontario, serving over 90% of Ontario’s population [7], that connect our communities. It’s also imperative that long-term stable funding is reinstated for our transit systems to serve our communities well. Together we can hold the new government to their promise to double their contribution to municipalities and urge them to re-instate stable operating funding. Supporting Organizations: ActionKeele - North York Citizens United for a Sustainable Planet (CUSP) - Thunder Bay CodeRedTO - Toronto Environment Hamilton Hamilton Transit Riders Union Friends of Sudbury Transit Healthy Transportation Coalition - Ottawa Keep York Moving - York Region London Transit Riders Alliance London Environmental Network Scarborough Transit Action Network South Etobicoke Transit Action Committee Toronto Environmental Alliance (TEA) Transit Action Alliance of Guelph (TAAG) TTCriders - Toronto [1] https://budget.ontario.ca/pdf/2019/2019-ontario-budget-en.pdf [2] https://news.ontario.ca/mto/en/2019/01/2018-19-gas-tax-funding-by-municipality.html [3] https://www.blogto.com/city/2016/04/the_year_it_all_went_down_the_tubes_for_the_ttc/ [4] http://www.octn.ca/uploads/userfiles/files/Kevin%20Dowling%20-%20Gas%20Tax%20Introduction.pdf [5] https://news.ontario.ca/mto/en/2017/01/enhanced-gas-tax-program.html [6] https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ford-gas-prices-fuel-tax-1.4665386 [7]http://www.octn.ca/uploads/userfiles/files/Questions%20and%20Answers%20on%20the%20Provincial%20Gas%20Tax%20MTO%20March%202017.pdf
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    Created by Transit riders across Ontario
  • Canada Support to Honduras Immigrants Caravan & Opposes Trump Anti-Immigrant Policy
    This a Latin-american humanitarian crisis and chaos. We as Canadians have to step up and support a fair process to people needing real protection and entry into Canada. These people are escaping from gangs violence, government corruption and prosecution with the support of the US government who provides all the weapons and Trump has developed a hate campaign to stop these people in need of protection and violating their most basic human rights. Human Rights declaration: Article 14-Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution. We have to call for the Canada embassy in these countries to process valid refugees claims and allow them entry into Canada. They are not criminals, and are fleeing violence and deplorable economic hurdles. This is the time for Canada to just stay silent and complicit and act now and oppose this madness that has raised and has become part of the normal since the election of Donald Trump.
    17 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Annita Estrada