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Ontario Hansard - 20-July2020

PETITIONS

SOCIAL ASSISTANCE


Ms. Jill Andrew: I present this petition on behalf of the fine residents of Toronto–St. Paul’s. It’s a petition to establish universal basic income in Ontario.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed and exacer-bated the financial hardships of residents across Ontario, and especially in Toronto–St. Paul’s. In St. Paul’s, more than 12,500 of our people needed the help of a food bank in 2018, including nearly 3,000 of our kids. In St. Paul’s, nearly 2,500 children are living below the poverty line and the riding unemployment rate is 6.3%, which is higher than Toronto as a whole.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas more than 67% of Toronto–St. Paul’s resi-dents are renters, many of whom are seniors on fixed income, single-parent families and people who depend on the Ontario Disability Support Program who are facing eviction on August 1, putting more of a demand on our already at-capacity shelter system; and

“Whereas the costs of poverty are borne by us all, Feed Ontario’s 2019 cost-of-poverty report found that each household in Ontario is losing more than $2,300 each year because of the economic costs of poverty; and

“Whereas Ontario families need support to be able to prioritize their health and the health of their families, no one should be forced to choose between feeding their family, buying medication and paying rent; and

“Whereas the previous Liberal provincial government failed to implement the substantial minimum wage and ODSP increases that Ontarians required. Instead, it decided to cut funding for social housing and privatize Ontario Hydro. The Ford government in 2018 cancelled the Ontario Basic Income Pilot project before collecting any substantial data; and

“Whereas the provincial NDP committed in 2018 to making a universal basic income a reality within a decade and has, during the pandemic, proposed a plan to ensure every household receives $2,000 a month and an annual increase with inflation; and

“Whereas Ontario has the opportunity to be a provincial leader in championing basic income for all and to work in partnership with our federal leader Jagmeet Singh, who, in April, called for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit to be turned into a universal benefit;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“The Ontario government immediately establish a pandemic-related, direct emergency basic income plan to ensure every household receives $2,000 a month and an annual increase with inflation;

“That the pandemic-related emergency basic income project be considered phase 2 of the Ontario Basic Income Pilot project, with concrete plans to study the results with a view to establishing a permanent basic income program as we recover from COVID-19.”

I overwhelmingly support this petition, affix my name to it and hand it to the usher.

ECONOMIC RECOVERY


Mrs. Gila Martow: I have a petition entitled “Framework for Reopening the Economy.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas Ontarians have been working relentlessly to adhere to physical distancing guidelines, limiting themselves to necessary travel and protecting their loved ones; and

“Whereas our health care professionals are working long hours in our long-term-care homes, doctors’ offices, community care, and hospitals; and

“Whereas other essential workers such as grocery store clerks, farmers, meat and produce processors and transport workers keep our shelves stocked and food on the table; and

“Whereas the province has made significant progress in the fight against COVID-19 with decreasing infection and hospitalization rates, domestic production of personal protective equipment, and crucial financial investments in health and social services;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“That the government continues its methodical, cautious approach to reopen the economy so that people can get back to work, businesses can recover and people can regain a hopeful optimism for the future of this great province.”

Of course, I affix my signature.

AUTISM TREATMENT


Mr. Faisal Hassan: I have a petition entitled “Support Ontario Families with Autism.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas every child with autism deserves access to sufficient treatment and support so that they can live to their fullest potential;

“Whereas the Ontario Autism Program was badly broken under the Liberals, and the changes introduced by the Conservatives have made it worse;

“Whereas the new funding caps are based on age and income, and not the clinical needs of the child;

“Whereas Ontario needs a true investment in evidence-based autism services that meets the needs of autistic children and their families;

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“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to direct the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services to invest in equitable, needs-based autism services for all children who need them.”

I support this petition, and I’ll be adding my signature to it and taking it to the table.

JUSTICES OF THE PEACE


Mr. Robert Bailey: “Proposed Changes to Justices of the Peace Act Petition.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the government of Ontario remains committed to pressing forward towards a more accessible, responsive and resilient justice system; and

“Whereas the current process to appoint justices of the peace is outdated and slow. This has created obstacles to filling vacancies, resulting in delays for people wanting their day in court; and

“Whereas there is a need for greater transparency and the promotion of more diversity throughout the recruitment and appointment process; and

“Whereas maintaining the integrity of Ontario’s appointment process for justices of the peace is vital to the administration of a strong justice system;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario as follows, so that:

“(1) The act is amended with respect to the composition and processes of the Justices of the Peace Appointments Advisory Committee;

“(2) The composition of the committee is changed to be leaner and more efficient while continuing to ensure local voices are present. The importance of committees representing the diversity of the communities they serve shall be recognized;

“(3) The committee may hold its meetings and conduct interviews in person or through electronic means, including telephone conferencing and video conferencing.”

I agree with this, Mr. Speaker, and send my signature with this petition. I’ll send it down with Ilhan.

ANTI-RACISM ACTIVITIES


Ms. Bhutila Karpoche: This petition is titled “Petition for the Creation and Implementation of the Regis Report,” and this is signed on behalf of constituents.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas on May 27, 2020, Regis Korchinski-Paquet’s mother called 911 for police assistance during a family dispute. Within minutes of the police arriving, Regis ended up deceased on the ground 24 floors below. A call for assistance, ended in death;

“Whereas other calls for assistance that ended in death include April 6, DeAndre Campbell-Kelly, shot to death by police in Peel; May 8, Caleb Njoko in London, fell 15 floors from his balcony while police were present; and June 20, Ejaz Choudry, shot to death by police in Malton;

“Whereas the provincial government has a responsibility to ensure all residents are safe and will not be subject to differential treatment by law enforcement based on race, religion or mental state;

“Whereas a report by the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) titled Under Suspicion: Concerns About Racial Profiling by Police, found that case law recognizes that racial profiling is a systemic problem in policing;

“Whereas in an interim report, A Collective Impact, the OHRC found that Black people are grossly overrepresented in cases involving police use of force that results in serious injury or death. Despite making up only 8.8% of Toronto’s population, Black people were overrepresented in use of force cases (28.8%), shootings (36%), deadly encounters (61.5%) and fatal shootings (70%), and 20 times more likely to be shot by police;

“Whereas Toronto city council, acknowledging the existence of anti-Black racism, anti-Indigenous racism and its connection to police brutality, passed a motion on July 1, 2020, calling on the provincial government to address police violence and systemic racism;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to implement a human-rights-based provincial strategy named the Regis report that includes the following:

“(1) The immediate implementation and expansion of the existing crisis intervention teams to be available 24 hours a day to accompany police officers to all calls for mental health and wellness checks, to de-escalate crises and prevent unnecessary use of force by police officers;

“(2) The reinstatement of the Safer Ontario Act, 2018, along with the recommendations made by Justice Tulloch’s police oversight review that would apply to the SIU and other police oversight agencies;

“(3) The release of the names of police officers present at any incident investigated by the SIU should any member of the public request it;

“(4) A thorough review of the equipment and use of force regulation, R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 926, so as to emphasize de-escalation and address the use of deadly force;

“(5) The immediate divestment of the associated budget lines towards equitable community-centred and harm-reduction focused first responders ...;

“(6) A commitment to ensure COVID-19 recovery efforts include measures to end anti-Black, anti-Indigenous racism and address the mental health challenges exacerbated by COVID-19 for many Ontarians.”

ECONOMIC RECOVERY


Ms. Andrea Khanjin: I propose the following petition: “Proposed Changes to the Environmental Assessment Act.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted everyone in the province, creating personal and financial hardship and resulting in losses far greater than anyone could have imagined. Individuals, families and businesses have risen to the challenge and supported each other through one of the darkest periods in Ontario’s history; and

“Whereas Ontarians are looking for decisive action to be taken to restart the province’s economic engine in a safe, yet effective, way; and

“Whereas now more than ever, critical infrastructure projects are desperately needed to stimulate recovery to ensure thousands of Ontarians can get back to work and reverse the serious economic impacts of COVID-19; and

“Whereas the Ontario government has endeavoured to update an almost 50-year-old environmental assessment program to build a modern, practical process that supports strong environmental oversight and a strong economy; and

“Whereas the province must focus resources on pro-jects and reduce wait times for assessments up to 50% for the largest projects, while also matching assessment requirements to the level of environmental impact so critical projects can get off the ground without undue delay;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legisla-tive Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“Pass the much-needed legislation, Bill 197, An Act to amend various statutes in response to COVID-19 and to enact, amend and repeal various statutes, to respond to the devastating impact of COVID-19 on the people of Ontario.”

I affix my signature.

AFFORDABLE HOUSING


Ms. Jill Andrew: This petition is on behalf of our community in St. Paul’s.

“Petition for Real Protections from Above-Guideline Rent Increases:

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas housing is a human right;

“Whereas rental rates in Toronto–St. Paul’s and across Ontario are increasingly unaffordable;

“Whereas we need to protect our affordable housing stock in Ontario;

“Whereas paying to maintain a building should be the responsibility of the landlord;

“Whereas above-guideline rent increases can increase rent well over what people can afford;

“Whereas inaction on this issue will mean thousands of Ontarians will be forced from their homes;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to immediately review above-the-guideline increase rules and regulations, and ensure that rental housing remains affordable in Ontario.”

I couldn’t agree with this petition more. I’m affixing my signature and will hand it to the usher.

ECONOMIC RECOVERY


Mr. Michael Parsa: “To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted everyone in the province, creating personal and financial hardship and resulting in losses far greater than anyone could have imagined. Individuals, families and businesses have risen to the challenge and supported each other through one of the darkest periods in Ontario’s history; and

“Whereas Ontarians are looking for decisive action to be taken to restart the province’s economic engine in a safe, yet effective, way; and

“Whereas now more than ever, critical infrastructure projects are desperately needed to stimulate recovery to ensure thousands of Ontarians can get back to work and reverse the serious economic impacts of COVID-19; and

“Whereas the Ontario government has endeavoured to update an almost 50-year-old environmental assessment program to build a modern, practical process that supports strong environmental oversight and a strong economy; and

“Whereas the province must focus resources on pro-jects and reduce wait times for assessments up to 50% for the largest projects, while also matching assessment requirements to the level of environmental impact so critical projects can get off the ground without undue delay;

“Therefore we, the undersigned, petition the Legisla-tive Assembly of Ontario as follows:

“Pass the much-needed legislation, Bill 197, An Act to amend various statutes in response to COVID-19 and to enact, amend and repeal various statutes, to respond to the devastating impact of COVID-19 on the people of Ontario.”

I will add my name to this and pass it on to one of the ushers.

ANTI-RACISM ACTIVITIES


Ms. Jill Andrew: This is the “Petition for the Creation and Implementation of the Regis Report.

“To the Legislative Assembly of Ontario:

“Whereas on May 27, 2020, Regis Korchinski-Paquet’s mother called 911 for police assistance during a family dispute. Within minutes of the police arriving, Regis ended up deceased on the ground 24 floors below. A call for assistance, ended in death;

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“Whereas other calls for assistance that ended in death include April 6, DeAndre Campbell-Kelly, shot to death by police in Peel; May 8, Caleb Njoko in London, fell 15 floors from his balcony while police were present; and June 20, Ejaz Choudry, shot to death by police in Malton;

“Whereas the provincial government has a responsibility to ensure all residents are safe and will not be subject to differential treatment by law enforcement based on race, religion or mental state;

“Whereas a report by the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC), titled Under Suspicion: Concerns About Racial Profiling by Police, found that case law recognizes that racial profiling is a systemic problem in policing;

“Whereas in an interim report, A Collective Impact, the OHRC found that Black people are grossly overrepresented in cases involving police use of force that results in serious injury or death. Despite making up only 8.8% of Toronto’s population, Black people were overrepresented in use of force cases (28.8%), shootings (36%), deadly encounters (61.5%) and fatal shootings (70%), and 20 times more likely to be shot by police;

“Whereas Toronto city council, acknowledging the existence of anti-Black racism, anti-Indigenous racism and its connection to police brutality, passed a motion on July 1, 2020, calling on the provincial government to address police violence and systemic racism;

“We, the undersigned, petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to implement a human-rights-based provincial strategy named the Regis report that includes the following:

“(1) The immediate implementation and expansion of the existing crisis intervention teams to be available 24 hours a day to accompany police officers to all calls for mental health and wellness checks, to de-escalate crises and prevent unnecessary use of force by police officers;

“(2) The reinstatement of the Safer Ontario Act, 2018, along with the recommendations made by Justice Tulloch’s police oversight review that would apply to the SIU and other police oversight agencies;

“(3) The release of the names of police officers present at any incident investigated by the SIU should any member of the public request it;

“(4) A thorough review of the equipment and use of force regulation, R.R.O. 1990, Reg. 926, so as to emphasize de-escalation and address the use of deadly force;

“(5) The immediate divestment of the associated budget lines towards equitable community-centred and harm-reduction focused first responders ... ;

“(6) A commitment to ensure COVID-19 recovery efforts include measures to end anti-Black, anti-Indigenous racism and address the mental health challenges exacerbated by COVID-19 for many Ontarians.”

Speaker, I overwhelmingly support this petition with everything inside of me. I have signed my signature to it, and I will hand it to the usher.

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