The number of working poor people in Burlington is lower than Milton and Halton

graphic community 5By Staff

June 1st, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Work or employment is commonly understood as a means for individuals to have a decent living.

With the impact of COVID-19 over the past year, there were substantial changes in both employment and earnings, leading to precarious work for individuals and their families.1 Many of those individuals may become the working poor and how we as community ensure that all members of our community are included in the recovery process is critical.

worling poor CDH

As shown in the chart below, Oakville and Milton are above the Halton average, while Burlington and Halton Hills are below.

As with poverty, there are many ways to define working poor. Using Statistics Canada’s tax filer information set as the data source,2 working poor3 is defined as individuals with an after-tax income below the Low Income Measure (LIM-AT) and earning an annual working income4 of over $3,000.

The income threshold of $3,000 reflects the federal government’s Working Income Tax Benefit (WITB) refundable tax credit intended to provide tax relief for eligible working low-income individuals and families who are already in the workforce and to encourage other Canadians to enter the workforce.

Using the most currently available data, in 2018 a working poor person earned more than $3,000 but less than $24,654 (LIM-AT for a single adult).

working poor photoIn 2018, there were over 444,000 working poor individuals in Ontario. They represented about 6.6% of the population (18-64 years) excluding full-time students living on their own. By comparison, in Halton Region, the working poor population was over 12,000 accounting for 4.5% of the working age population.

The data was provided by Community Development Halton.

1 COVID Economic and Social Effects Study (CESES), McMaster University, 2021. https://labourstudies.mcmaster.ca/research/covid19- impact
2 Grouping of postal codes were provided to Statistics Canada and Statistics Canada makes no representation or warranty as to, or validation of, the accuracy of any Postal Code OM data

3 A similar definition is used in Metcalf Foundation, The Working Poor in the Toronto Region, mapping working poverty in Canada’s richest city by John Stapleton, April 2015
4 Working income is the total amount of an individual’s income for the year from employment and business, excluding losses.

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Stay at Home ends tomorrow - Roadmap to re-opening follows

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

June 1st, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Tomorrow, June 2nd, we come out of the Stay at Home order the province put in place April 7, 2021.

Easterbrook ;ined up

Social distancing was observed in most places.

However, all the other public health and workplace measures remain in place provincewide until Ontario enters Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen, at which point some restrictions will ease with an initial focus on outdoor settings.

The Roadmap to re-opening is a complex document with specific changes that are linked to the number of people who have been vaccinated.

Details on that Roadmap will follow in a separate article.

“With the Stay-At-Home order set to expire, we need to provide people with certainty so that they can continue to follow public health guidance. Doing so will help us to meet our goal of starting to gradually lift some restrictions when we enter Step One of the Roadmap when it is safe to do so.”

In a concentrated effort to reduce mobility and opportunities for transmission, the Stay-At-Home order required Ontarians to remain at home except for the purposes set out in the order, such as exercise, going to the grocery store or pharmacy, or accessing health care services. Once the Stay-at-Home order expires on June 2, these restrictions will no longer be in effect.
However, all other existing measures will remain in place provincewide, including restrictions on gatherings, businesses, services and activities.

This includes limiting indoor gatherings to households only and outdoor gatherings of up to five people, subject to limited exceptions, maintaining a cap of 25 per cent capacity for essential retail where only certain goods are permitted to be sold, restricting non-essential retail to curbside pickup and delivery only, as well as limiting short-term rentals to individuals in need of housing and allowing Ontario parks and campgrounds on public lands to be used for day-use only, subject to limited exceptions.

Ontarians will be able to leave home to travel within the province to a secondary residence for any reason however, they are not be permitted to host members of another household indoors except for a person from another household who lives alone or with a caregiver.

A simple, easy-to-understand summary of restrictions can be found on the province’s “Reopening Ontario” webpage, which provides details on what public health measures are in place before the province enters Step One of the Roadmap to Reopen. As always, anyone who may have been exposed to COVID-19 or who may be exhibiting symptoms of the virus should use the province’s self-assessment tool to determine what they should do next, including getting a test and isolating if necessary.

bikes on the promendae

One has to wonder why a Stay at Home order was put in place.

With the expiry of the Stay-at-Home order, emergency order O. Reg 266/21 (Residential Evictions) will also expire on June 2, 2021.

Emergency orders currently in effect under the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act have been extended until June 16, 2021.

No word yet on what the Premier wants to do with schools. He is looking for a consensus: should something go wrong the blame can be shared by everyone.

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Mariam Manaa: a young women with significant community experience in a political setting seeking the Liberal nomination

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

June 1st, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Mariam Manaa said she knew the day she sat in on a House of Commons committee meeting that the world of politics was definitely for her.

Manaa Miriam H&S

Mariam Manaa

Manaa had worked as a summer intern with Oakville North Burlington MP Pam Damoff; it was a four month gig but it was enough at the time to learn just what a politician does.

Mariam returned to school, she had been attending high school in Oakville where the family lived. She continued her studies in community planning and keeping busy with the Muslim Association of Canada work she and her Mother did.

The family, Mom and Dad and two brothers came to Canada when Mariam was eight years old. They lived in the Gaza part of Palestine. While Mariam doesn’t remember all that much she does know that it was a trying time for the family.

The Israelis had occupied the country and then withdrawn but kept a very tight security ring around Gaza.

The parents wanted something better for their children and immigrated to Canada.
Her Mother worked in a bakery, her Dad worked as a handyman and the children went to school.

It was a huge emotional and psychological change for the family.

“Sitting in that House of Commons committee room with my notebook in hand listening intently to everything that was being said I couldn’t believe how fortunate I was” said Manaa.

A few years later Mariam applied for a job with Burlington MP Karina Gould who was also a Cabinet Minister. She was hired and spent more than three years with Minister Gould.

In her mind Mariam said she was in basic training to become a politician. She knew she was a Liberal – and she fully understood the different levels of responsibility that the federal politicians had and the role the provincial government played in the lives of ordinary people.

“I wanted to be doing things that made a difference in the lives of normal people.

“Education was really important to me; health and the environment mattered to me.” Manaa said she learned something new everyday she was on the job.

“I had gotten myself to the point where I knew I needed to pick up additional skill sets.
I was always involved with the Muslim community and got a chance to work for the Muslim Association doing public relations work.

Manaa with empower sign

A community advocate from an early age Mariam Manaa now wants to represent Burlington in the provincial legislature.

Mariam now wears the traditional Muslim hijab but didn’t wear it during her high school years.

“My cultural views and learning more about what it really meant to be Muslim were aspects of my life that I grew into when I had completed high school.

Respecting the cultural and religious part of her community led to Mariam, working with the Muslim Association, to holding a pop-up vaccination station where Muslim women could be vaccinated in private. Muslim women do not display their bodies the way western woman do.

Getting vaccinated meant lowering the burqa sleeve which is something that is just not done in a public setting.

“We got a great turnout from the women in the Muslim community” said Manaa.

She has come to learn that one of Canada’s strengths is its diversity.

“People respect those that are different in the way they dress and the lifestyle they live  – but they are accepted and invited to take part in the fostering and developing of the community.

“Giving back is such a fundamental part of who my family is – we see the news on television at night and know how terrible it is in the land that I came from – where I was raised as a child.” Mariam spends her days on the telephone talking to people one-on-one.  I try to get to between 30 and 40 people each day building support for my nomination.”

The Burlington Liberal Association will decide on June 26th who the Liberal candidate will be.  It is not certain yet if the event will be virtual.

 

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After a bit of kafuffle it comes down to two women seeking the Liberal nomination to be the candidate in the June 2022 provincial election

SwP thumbnail graphicBy Pepper Parr

May 31st, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

OPINION

So – what did happen?

We learn that ward 2  Councillor Lisa Kearns had decided to accept a suggestion that she seek the nomination for the Burlington seat in the Legislature.

We were never able to get that confirmed directly from the Burlington Liberal Association but we were able to get confirmation from a reliable party source.

Manaa Miriam H&S

Mariam Manaa – seeking the Liberal nomination.

We were unaware that there was a already a Miriam Manass, woman who had expressed an interest and was running a personal campaign to seek the nomination.

All we had was Lisa Kearns filling her social media with everything she had. Today it was pairs of children’s shoes at the foot of the flag poles outside city hall in support of the 200+ children who were buried on the grounds of a Residential School used to house Indigenous Children who had been taken from their parents.

Kearns with shoes

Lisa Kearns during a Facebook moment at the foot of the flag poles outside city hall

Kearns informed us that she wrote a university thesis on just that issue. We asked for a copy of the thesis thinking it would be interesting to read what a student had to say about the shameful past that had churches being responsible for the welfare of children and then abusing them. Not all the churches but far too many of them.  “Don’t have the document anymore” advised Kearns. Most people hang on to the work they do at the university level.

Then out of the blue we learn that Andrea Grebenc has decided to seek the nomination for the Burlington seat. We thought that she would be a very good candidate for the ward 3 council seat.  She has credibility.

Grebenc

Andrea Grebenc during a virtual school board meeting.

The faster than you can say “Jack Rabbit” Kearns announces that she likes the look of Grebenc and has decided to drop out of the race and support Grebenc.

What really happened?

And also – what happened to the woman who was being “groomed” to replace Kearns on city Council once she had won the provincial seat?

She appears to have been thrown under the bus.

Kearns and Grebenc were not close to each other. I doubt that they actually met – but could be wrong on that.

Our belief is that Kearns found there was a sudden need for a change of clothing when she learned of the Grebenc announcement and did what she could to give herself political coverage.

No need to take a look at the other candidate – Grebenc would fill the bill.

As much as we admire the work Grebenc has done at the school board she would have been better advised to solicit Kearns’ vote and take a pass on an endorsement.

The joint media release the two woman put out was pretty self-serving – no one came out of that looking very good.

The lingering question is – how much damage has Kearns done to her brand and image? She has made herself vulnerable. The mind of the policy wonk failed her – when there was a personal threat – back away.  There has always been a skittishness to Lisa Kearns.

Kearns said both personal and professional matters brought about the decision to withdraw. She should have said that and moved on

Courage of your convictions wouldn’t apply here.

What then does apply?  That is something the voters will get to decide in 2021. Does Kearns think time will wash this all away?

Salt with Pepper is the musings, reflections and opinions of the publisher of the Burlington Gazette, an online newspaper that was formed in 2010 and is a member of the National Newsmedia Council.

Related news stories

Lisa Kearns announces

Grebenc announces

Mariam Manaa announcement

Joint media release

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Lane Closures: North Shore Boulevard East, at QEW Toronto/Niagara on-ramps, June 1 - 4, 2021

notices100x100By Staff

May 31st, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The Ministry of Transportation Ontario (MTO) is doing work on North Shore Boulevard East, between QEW Toronto and QEW Niagara on-ramps

All lanes will be closed except for one lane in this section of North Shore Boulevard

Tuesday, June 1 to Friday, June 4, 2021
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

MTO Traffic Control personnel will maintain two-way traffic and provide priority right-of-way for emergency vehicles when needed.

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RoundTables held by MP should be more transparent

graphic community 3By Pepper Parr

May 31st, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

OPINION

Earlier today Karina Gould, Burlington MP and member of the Trudeau Cabinet where she serves as Minister of International Development, sent out her May Newsletter in which she said:

Gould

MP Karina Gould talking to a citizen after one of the last public debates that took place during the last federal election.

“While the COVID-19 pandemic has been difficult for all of us, it has highlighted barriers that many individuals and sectors face disproportionately.

“This month, I hosted roundtables to discuss issues facing seniors and individuals living with disabilities.

“I heard from service providers and community advocates on how to continue building a community that is inclusive by design and that enables an environment of belonging for all Canadians. It was important to hear their perspectives as we work with the provinces and territories on improving supports for Canadians living with disabilities, create dignified employment opportunities, and support accessible spaces here in Burlington and across the country.’

First let us applaud the Member of Parliament for holding the RoundTables. These are important – the elected need to hear from the electors.

There is however a larger audience that hasn’t a clue what the various advocates think is important and how the MP responds to them.

These RoundTables, as important as they are, should be open to media. Not to participate but to observe and report and then to follow up with the voice of different community groups and the MP as well.

It’s known as transparency – a word used by the elected when it suits their purpose.

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Park Ambassadors on duty to answer questions

News 100 greenBy Pepper Parr

May 31st, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

A Gazette reader asked:

“Tell me why I see this all the time. Shouldn’t they be spread out so that those parking at any given time all along the Beachway can easily find one…or is it like when you go to a big box store and you can’t find an employee in the aisle ?”

AMBASSADORS

Park Ambassadors on duty on the weekend – they are in place to answer questions and help people with parking issues.

Fair question. Unfortunately a number of weeks ago a city staff member (we are calling them Park Ambassadors) was accosted and felt their personal safety was at risk.

City Manager Tim Commisso had been adamant that he is not going to see his staff put at risk –  the Ambassador’s were to work in pairs.  (And yes the picture we got shows three people who appear to be working together).  This is the price we pay for those who feel they have a right to abuses civil servants.

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Zoom Zoom - candidate for the Liberal nomination holds a Town Hall

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

May 29th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

That didn’t take her very long.

Grebenc frown

Andrea Grebenc seeking the Liberal nomination for the 2022 provincial election.

District School Board Chair Andrea Grebenc announced her intention to seek the Liberal nomination as the candidate for the 2022 provincial election

The Gazette did an interview, published it earlier today.

Then we get an announcement that Grebenc will be holding a Zoom Town Hall Sunday evening 7:00 pm.

Registration:
https://forms.gle/Y1ATWiR9tR2wS5fm9

Manaa Miriam H&S

Miriam Manaa – also seeking the Liberal nomination.

Glad she chose Sunday – watching the Habs take the Leafs in a critical game is my Saturday night priority.

The Gazette has been in touch with the other candidate for the nomination Miriam Manaa and will be interviewing her as soon as possible.

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School Board Chair Andrea Grebenc wants to be a member of the provincial legislature

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

May 29th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

She won handily in 2014 against three other candidates for a seat as a trustee with the Halton District School Board.  She used the first two years to get a feel for the job she eventually became exceptionally good at.  Her colleagues thought enough of her ability to make her chair of the Board during her first term.

Grebenc frown

Listening carefully

In her second term she was acclaimed and served as the Chair of the Board every year.

In her first term she made the difficult decision to vote for the closing of two of the seven Burlington high schools one of which was in her ward.  It was also the high school from which she graduated.

As the Trustee for 10 elementary schools and two high schools she busied herself with getting to know the schools, the student population and the problems.  Grebenc has an open,  engaging personality that says how can I help without using the words.

She is a problem solver who grew into an advocate with the strength of character to challenge the province and the way it was handling what Grebenc saw as serious flaws in the way education was being both delivered and funded.  School board trustees often seem to be a little timid, more into the fluffier parts of being an elected official. Timid is not a word that  gets used to describe Andrea Grebenc.

Trustees Grebencand Gray BEST

Andrea Grebenc on the right at a major public meeting with fellow trustee Jeanne Gray.

A life long Burlington resident, the child of parents who immigrated to Canada and chose Burlington as home. Grebenc was once in the Burlington Teen Tour Band and worked as a Sound of Music volunteer – both touch points for young people experiencing the city.

School started at St. Mark’s Catholic elementary school after which she went on to Lester B Pearson high school and then attended Wilfred Laurier University earning an Honours Bachelor Science degree.

The mother of three children she formed her own company offering communications and IT services.

As a trustee she took a year to get the understanding she needed to be effective.

When the province began to consult with the public on increasing class sizes and imposing mandatory e-learning courses Grebenc worked with her fellow trustees and spearheaded, the Halton Education Action team of HDSB Trustees to find out what Halton parents, guardians, and community members thought of these changes. The trustees organized, formed and ran in-person regional focus groups, surveyed the community, analyzed the data, and wrote a comprehensive report that was used as evidence against the changes.

The Halton community consultation proved to be a more robust consultation than that of the Ministry.  The Halton  submissions, almost 7,000 in-person and surveyed, amounted to more than the Ministry received from the rest of the province combined.

The trustees are currently advocating for evidence-based collaborative decision-making surrounding the issue of permanently expanding online and remote learning.

Grebenc - expressive hands

Andrea Grebenc: speaks directly and is usually on point. She seldom ducks a question.

She is forthright about her opinions on how Provincial decisions and directives affect students and Ontario’s education system.

As a trustee she has made the province her constituency and has  focused on improving education through her work as a school board trustee.

The Grebenc profile became one that was recognized beyond the Region.

In July of 2020 it was “Whereas” after “Whereas”  in the motion Grebenc put before her trustees.  They were followed by the resolution:

“Be it resolved that the Chair ask the Minister of Education for clarification about who the decision maker is for the September school year start up.”

Grebenc had the support of her trustees.  In comments made after the motion was tabled Grebenc said that “there are in excess of 36,000 elementary students within the Halton Board – where are those children going to be cared for should they have to distant learn ?”

“What will we get – quickly formed day care centre’s that are not regulated, not inspected with other children coming from who knows where ?  The bubbles that most families created to ensure their kids were safe would not be feasible.”

Grebenc had made her mark.

Miller in a huddle with Grebenc

Andrea Grebenc has a strong working relationship with the Director of Education Stuart Miller.

Grebenc tends to be a listener and problem solver; drama and grandstanding are tools she leaves behind.

The capacity to get things done spills over into her community work.  One of her most recent projects was forming “Masks for COVID -Burlington”. In April 2020, she recruited and organized 80+ people throughout Burlington into a living, caring and productive mask-making machine. Andrea organized material procurers, cutters, sewers, and distributors, making daily rounds to transport materials and masks to Long Term Care and Retirement Homes early in the pandemic when PPE was scarce.

The original mandate was 2,000 masks, but due to the dedication of the volunteers, 3,000 masks were completed and distributed and the group was able to expand their mandate to include some local food banks.

Andrea currently sits on the Mayor’s COVID task force and provides status updates on behalf of the Halton District School Board.

Grebenc is one of two women seeking the nomination to be the Liberal candidate in the provincial election set for June of 2022.  Given the current political climate in the province there are a number of reasons to believe the Premier will call a snap election if his support firms up once inoculation levels reach the 60 or 70% levels and new infection reports are consistently below 1000.

 

 

 

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Final gypsy moth pesticide spraying to take place June 1st and 2nd

News 100 greenBy Staff

May 29th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The Forestry department will be overseeing the application of the second and final application of  a bio-pesticide on Tuesday, June 1 and Wednesday, June 2

aerial spraying gypsy moth

Public risk is very very limited.

Low-flying helicopters will be used  to apply the pesticide over four wooded areas to control gypsy moth (lymantria dispar dispar, LDD) populations.

Gypsy moth caterpillars eat the leaves of trees, causing significant defoliation and potential long-term impact to the City’s urban forest.

The first application was successfully completed on May 25.
The final application of the pesticide will be completed between 5 and 9 a.m. and is expected to take 5-10 minutes for each park.

The areas identified for spraying include:
• City View Park
• Kilbride Park
• LaSalle Park
• Zimmerman Park

City staff will be temporarily preventing vehicles from using roads nearest the spray areas as the helicopter passes. The stoppage will take less than 15 minutes.

An interactive map is available on burlington.ca/gypsymoth that allows residents to enter an address so they can see where the address is in relation to the spray areas.

 

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Kearns withdraws from nomination race - supports Grebenc

News 100 redBy Staff

May 28th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

A statement, jointly released by Lisa Kearns, Councillor for ward 2 and a candidate for the Burlington Provincial Liberal Association and Andrea Grebenc, Chair of the Halton District School Board and also a candidate for the Liberal nomination, said:

Burlington is the best place to live, raise a family, start a business or age in place. Ontario’s general election is just over a year away. It will be an election focused on fighting to strengthen public health care, deliver quality education, grow our economy, and protect our environment for generations to come.

Burlington needs an exceptionally strong candidate to go on the ballot for the June 2022 provincial election. There were two elected officials for the Ontario Liberal nomination: Lisa Kearns, City and Regional Councillor Ward 2 and Andrea Grebenc, Halton District School Board Chair and Trustee for Wards 3 & 6.

Kearns - trhe like

Ward 2 city councilor Lisa Kearns announces decision to withdraw from seeking the Liberal nomination.

Lisa Kearns has withdrawn her nomination after due consideration and will seek municipal re-election. She states, “when Ms Grenbenc put forth her interest in running I was happy that there was another candidate that I felt that was a good strong choice for this position, which would allow me to stay in my role as Ward 2 Councillor and continue my passionate work for the ward that I work and live in. There is still so much work to be done here, especially on matters of planning and development. All the recent advancements we have achieved could become undone without the continued watch of a seasoned councillor who is up to date and understands planning matters. I am happy to work alongside Ms Grebenc and give her my support in solidly positioning Burlington for community supported growth, not over-development.”

As a life-long Burlington resident, Ms Grebenc has successfully competed in two municipal elections for Halton District School Board Trustee and runs an IT consultation business. The second-largest area of provincial oversight is education.

By the time the provincial election is called she will have been working directly for that sector – approving budgets, advocating, and setting policy for nearly 8 years.

Burlington is fortunate to have nomination candidates truly focused on serving constituents so we can make a better tomorrow for Burlington residents and the citizens of Ontario.

Grebenc frown

Andrea Grebenc, Chair of the Halton District School Board chairing a meeting virtually.

Grebenc, speaking about Kearns said: “Lisa’s work as a councillor both at the city and regional level is impactful and shows a deep concern for the future of the City of Burlington. The conversations I’ve had with Lisa surrounding municipal issues where she has advocated for critical changes at the provincial level include the Land Planning Appeal Tribunal (LPAT) and policies that prioritize the health & well-being of our families and loved ones.

“These are issues I am happy to carry forward into the candidacy and ultimately to Queens Park as MPP for Burlington.” .

Kearns who didn’t know Grebenc previously said: “Andrea’s proven leadership and tenacity for advancing provincial matters are widely recognized. Her elected and professional roles demonstrate a keen interest in community well-being and navigating complex issues with political acuity. She will be a strong champion for Burlington’s values as we seek greater autonomy at the provincial level.”

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Kearns reported to have withdrawn from Liberal nomination race

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

May 28th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

Lisa Kearns Election Photo

Lisa Kearns currently the Councillor for ward 2

Unconfirmed report that Lisa Kearns has withdrawn as a candidate for nomination as the Liberal candidate for the Burlington Provincial Liberal Association.

Appears to have gotten a little skittish.

We will follow up on this later in the day.

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Find the will to vaccinate every student and teacher before September

SwP thumbnail graphicBy Pepper Parr

May 28th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The back and forth debate over sending students back to school for the three weeks in June that are the balance of this school term seems to forge what everyone says they want – the best thing for the students.

Stuart Miller

While due to retire in August, current Director of education for the Halton District School Board Stuart Miller could lead a drive to get students vaccinated before September.

Students have been jerked around for the past 18 months.

The pandemic that we are now beginning to admit was something we should have been more aware of did throw a monkey wrench into the way we educated students.

Teachers went into shock when they were asked to teach their students by telephone, which is basically what virtual teaching is. There were no programs to help the teachers overcome the problems.

The equipment needed didn’t exist. The Halton District school Board has put more than “2000 pieces of hardware” into the hands of students.

Some teachers had difficulty adapting to teaching virtually.

The public doesn’t yet understand just how big a challenge students faced. The idea of thinking about teaching kindergarten virtually boggles the mind.

Significant damage has been done, much of it unavoidable.

But surely we don’t have to continue damaging these students.

We appear to be on our way out of the pandemic. Vaccinations are taking place and the Ontario government seems too to have learned to communicate with its citizens.

It looks, as well, that the federal government has vaccine supply lines that are holding.

Could we not now commit to having every student and every teacher vaccinated before school classes begin again in September?

There is an organization called CODE – Committee of Directors of Education.  These men and women have clout – have them use that clout and work with the local Medical Officers of Health and get the job done.

It’s possible – what it appears to be missing is the will.

Find it – the students deserve to be back in the classrooms and the teachers have to be able to do what they do best.

Salt with Pepper is the musings, reflections and opinions of the publisher of the Burlington Gazette, an online newspaper that was formed in 2010 and is a member of the National Newsmedia Council.

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A third candidate for the provincial Liberal nomination

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

May 27th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

grebenc twitterAnother one!

Andrea Grebenc, the Chair of the Halton District School announced today that she too will seek the provincial Liberal nomination.

Lisa Kearns, ward 2 city councillor, Miriam Manaa and now Grebenc are in the race

More on Grebenc later this week.

 

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Mariam Manaa seeking the Liberal nomination for the Burlington seat in the legislature

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

May 27th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The “other” candidate for the provincial Liberal nomination is now known.

Manaa Miriam H&S

Mariam Manaa: seeking the Liberal nomination for the Burlington seat in the Provincial legislature.

She is Mariam Manaa, running for the Ontario Liberal Party nomination to be the candidate in Burlington for the 2022 election under the leadership of Steven Del Duca.

According to her web site she is a “a long time Burlington resident and an active member of the community. In the past years, I have been working for MP Karina Gould in her constituency office. I have experience in policy advisory and stakeholder relations. I have also worked in Ottawa for MP Pam Damoff as a Parliamentary Intern in 2017. I am an active member of the Liberal Party.

“I currently serve as a board member for the Lions McInnes House for the Blind and Deaf and just completed a term on the board of the Halton Mosque. Community service has always been a priority for me.

“I finished my diploma in Urban Regional Planning and am currently continuing my studies. I am passionate about making our communities more livable.

I want to be a voice for all Burlington residents, especially minorities.

As a young woman, I hope to bring a positive perspective to the Ontario legislature and be a role model to young people on civic engagement.”

We hope to follow up what Mariam tells us about herself on her web site with an interview in the near future.

In the short comment she makes on a You Tube posting she comes across as a well spoken young woman who is focused and tied into the community.

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Registration for Summer Recreation Program Opens Online May 29

News 100 greenBy Staff

May 25th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

With the beginning of a return to normality the Parks and Recreation Department has announced that the summer recreation program online registration opens May 29.

Swimming pool + children

A focus on building confidence in the water.

The City of Burlington’s summer outdoor and virtual recreation programs for adults 19+ and adults 55+ will be open for online registration beginning May 29, 2021 at 9 a.m. Aquatic programs will open for online registration May 29, 2021 at 11 a.m. All programming is subject to provincial and public health restrictions.

Indoor programs for adults and swimming lessons will be offered once indoor recreation facilities are permitted to open in Stage 3 of Ontario’s Roadmap to Reopening.

For information on the programs, visit burlington.ca/recreation.

Adult 19+ and 55+
Two four-week session will run this summer from June 28 to July 23 and July 26 to Aug. 20. Programs will be one or two-hours in length. Additional workshops, socials and outdoor activities will be offered periodically between June 28 and Aug. 27.

Registration is required and will begin on May 29.

Programs include learning and discussion series, bridge lessons and play, group music lessons and jam sessions, arts, languages, fitness and wellness programs, and workshops and socials include Pickleball equipment demonstrations, lunch and listen socials in the park, and moving meditation workshops.

Swimming
Mini swim lessons will be offered starting June 14 at Mountainside and Nelson Outdoor Pool. Classes will be practicing physical distancing with a focus on drowning prevention and building confidence in the water.

Indoor lessons will be offered at Angela Coughlan, Tansley Woods and Aldershot Pools later this summer, when indoor recreation facilities are permitted open in Stage 3 of Ontario’s Roadmap to Reopening Plan.

Leadership Programs
In-person aquatic leadership courses will be offered at our outdoor pools beginning June 14 for National Lifeguard recertification, Airway Management and Standard First Aid recertification.

Register for Leadership programs at burlington.ca/swimming.

All programs are subject to change based on the latest Provincial public health measures, advice and restrictions for Burlington as we continue to respond to the pandemic.

Drop-in programs, including fitness, wellness, recreational, swimming, Tim Hortons free swims and lap swims, will be returning in June as well. Visit burlington.ca/dropinandplay.

Bistro Express Curbside Pickup
Order a delicious and nutritious home-style meal. Made fresh then frozen for convenient reheating at home. Open Monday to Friday for call-in ordering and curbside pickup at the Burlington Seniors’ Centre, 2285 New St.

Menu options, prices and detailed ordering instructions can be viewed online by visiting, burlington.ca/adult and clicking on “Bistro Express Curbside Pickup” or by calling 905-335-7888, ext. 6346.

TelePALS Call-in Programs
TelePALS is a free, over-the-phone discussion, social and learning program for all adults.
View the TelePALS schedule at burlington.ca/telepals.

Recreation Fee Assistance
Recreation Fee Assistance is funding made available to individuals or families who need help to pay for City of Burlington recreational programs.

Glenn Chris

Chris Glenn, Director of Recreation, Community and Culture

For more information or to apply, visit burlington.ca/feeassistance. For more information, call 905-335-7600, ext. 8501 to leave a voice mail.

Chris Glenn, Director of Recreation, Community and Culture has had to run a department and programs that changed, daily at times. They would pivot only to find that the provincial rules changed and they had to pivot again. Glenn comments: “Our staff have worked hard to prepare a fun, exciting and safe set of summer and aquatic programs for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy. View the programs online and register early. We are looking forward to welcoming everyone back to our programs.”

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What do we have in Burlington that relates to Queen Victoria whose birthday we celebrate this weekend?

News 100 blueBy Alan Harrington

May 24th, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

There are probably hundreds, if not thousands of people who don’t fully understand what the holiday we are celebrating this weekend is all about.  Alan Harrington tells you why it matters

Victoria Day is the time when we remember the birthday of a Queen who ruled the most powerful country in the world about 200 years ago. Is there anything in town that relates to her?

There is actually: an old green fountain at the City Hall on the corner of Brant and Ontario Streets honours her son, who went on to succeed her as King Edward VII.

Edward VII became King when his mother Queen Victoria died in 1901, and King Edward VII ruled from 1901 to 1910.

fountain

The fountain was manufactured in Hamilton and originally had a horse trough. And the glass ball on top was larger than the one today.

The fountain, likely the oldest piece of public art in the city is highlighted in the Burlington Historical Society digital collection and is an important stop on the annual Downtown Heritage Walks conducted during Burlington Heritage Month in February.

The King Edward VII fountain was dedicated 108 years ago, on 2 May 1912 by the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, Sir John Gibson.

image001

In the left background is the south elevation of the Trader’s Bank, Brant Street. The carriage on the left conveyed his honour Lieut.-Governor Sir John Gibson, who unveiled the fountain, and Reeve M. C. Smith. The Sons of England float, on the right, carried, clockwise from the centre front: John Bull (represented by Sam Oakes); British soldier (Alf Matthews); Canadian soldier (Charles Rump); Britannia (Jennie Dearing); Miss Canada (Ida Ladle); and Sons of England representative (W. Metcalfe).

The parade and dedication ceremony drew people from far and wide.

Those parades were major events in those days.

The fountain was originally located at the foot of Brant Street and Water Street (now Lakeshore) next to what today is the Lakeshore Coffee House.

The Hamilton Spectator reported 4,000 people witnessing the unveiling on the 2nd anniversary of Edward VII’s death.

Line up statue

The fountain was tucked in between what was then a Royal Bank and the Roxy movie Theatre where there were often long line ups to watch a movie.

The fountain was later moved to Spencer Smith park.

The fountain, manufactured in Hamilton, originally had a water trough for horses. The glass ball on top was larger than the one today.

fountain - best

The fountain after its first restoration with the water troughs in place.

The fountain spent a considerable amount of time in storage until it was restored by the Optimist Club of Burlington and relocated to City Hall for the Queen’s Silver Jubilee in 1977

Time once again eroded the features of the fountain. After some encouragement from local concerned citizens, the city agreed the fountain needed work.

relocation plaqueAnd so, it has been carefully removed and taken to the repair shop.

The four Lion Heads at each corner (for the corners of the earth) match the four lion heads under the City Hall clock. Great Britain was once the most powerful country on earth – it stretched to the four corners of the earth.

As for the man the fountain was created to honour: Edward (Prince Albert) known as Bertie, was in the Golden Horseshoe in 1860 when he visited Toronto and Niagara Falls. He never did get to Burlington.

removal plaque

Taken away to be restored.

The fountain may be small but it stands its ground. It is the oldest public object still on display in the City of Burlington and has been there as our small town has grown to a great city.

But time and weather are hard on such treasures.

 

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More than one candidate expected to seek the Provincial Liberal nomination

News 100 redBy Pepper Parr

May 23rd, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

So – it isn’t going to be a slam dunk.

Kearns Lisa side view Mar 2019

First term ward 2 Councillor Kearns has announced that she will seek the Liberal nomination for the next provincial election.

Reliable  sources said today that Lisa Kearns would be seeking the nomination for the Burlington Provincial Liberal party when the nomination event is held and that a date has not yet been set.

The source added that “there is another candidate for this position”.

The source was not authorized to speak on behalf of the Provincial Liberal Association.

Kearns has been quite active in talking about her personal political plans – she has a virtual ward meeting later in the month – perhaps we will learn even more that that event.

McKenna + Drummond

Andrew Drummond, NDP candidate in the last provincial election, in conversation with Jane McKenna who won that election.

Andrew Drummond will be the candidate for the New Democrats.  Jane McKenna is the Progressive Conservative sitting member.

Premier Doug Ford has been hammered heavily for the way his government has handled the pandemic and managed the response.  Many prefer to use the word “mismanaged” when referring to the provincial vaccination program.

Early reports from Kearns-based sources had her being asked to run for the provincial seat rather than Mayor Meed Ward who was thought to have leadership aspirations at the provincial level.

In the event that Kearns is nominated and wins the election that would block a political growth path for Meed Ward.

Kearns is also reported to have chosen a colleague to groom for the ward 2 council seat.

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You now pay for parking in the Beachway on weekends. Tow trucks will be on hand to tow those who do not pay.

News 100 blueBy Staff

May 22nd, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

There isn’t an elected official at city hall who hasn’t had to deal with parking issues. That situation isn’t about to change this weekend when the city makes it mandatory to pay for parking in the Beachway.

Parking - took his chances

Earlier in the year, before paid parking was required, people would park right in front of the No parking sign.

The city needed a way to get some control over parking in the Beachway. People were leaving their vehicles wherever they could find a space: chaos reigned.

Pay for parking sign croppedEffective now you have to pay to park in the Beachway – and finding a space is not guaranteed. When you do find a space you follow the signs.

There are two ways to pay.

Use the Honk app or use you cell phone camera and take a picture of the QR code and you will be on your way.

The city will have Park Ambassadors roaming around the parking lot – they are there to help.  Be polite to them.

There will be free parking passes for Halton Region residents on the weekends.

Exemptions are not required on holidays as parking is free on holidays. Visitors must have a valid parking exemption or pay for parking on Saturdays and Sundays only from May 22 to Sept. 25

When Halton Region residents arrive at Beachway parking lot, they can find a City of Burlington ambassador to receive a paper permit and display it on their dashboard. The online form will be available in July. The exemption form link will be added to www.burlington.ca/paypark when it is available.

It is going to be messy – Burlingtonians have not had to share their beach all that much. The pandemic brought thousands to the waterfront – the space has to be shared.

Parking is free after 6 p.m. and on weekends and holidays in all downtown municipal parking lots, including the Locust Street Garage.

You can park free on the street.

There is parking space at the hospital parking structure. Parking in the city is free on the weekends and you can catch a bus at the John Street terminal and use Burlington Transit’s Routes 4, 10 and HSR’s Route 11 to get to the east end of Beachway Park.

Parking is free after 6 p.m. and on weekends and holidays in all downtown municipal parking lots, including the Locust Street Garage.

 

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Outdoor Recreational Amenities can Reopen

News 100 yellowBy Staff

May 22nd, 2021

BURLINGTON, ON

 

The Province has announced that outdoor recreational amenities can reopen as long as COVID measures are in place, beginning Saturday, May 22 at 12:01 a.m.

Now the city has to figure out which Parks and Recreation department programs can be made operational – again. This is perhaps the fourth pivot that department has had to make.

soccer balls + leg

You can kick the soccer ball around but can’t actually play a game – yet.

The things you will be able to do starting today include, but are not limited to, golf courses and driving ranges, soccer and other sports fields, tennis and basketball courts, and skate parks.

Outdoor limits for social gatherings and organized public events will be expanded to five people, which will allow these amenities to be used for up to five people, including with members of different households. All other public health and workplace safety measures under the province wide emergency brake remain in effect.

Changes to City services and programs:  Recreation Services, Parks, Amenities and Facilities
Outdoor Courts
Outdoor courts such as pickleball, basketball and tennis courts will be open Saturday, May 22. If there are people waiting to use the court, please keep your time to a maximum of 30-minutes. Masks are to be worn while waiting for your turn. For locations of outdoor courts, visit burlington.ca/outdoorplay.

Sport Fields
Grass sport fields will open for casual use such as throwing a ball, self-directed yoga, kicking a ball or flying a kite. Organized sports and recreational classes are not permitted. Groups of up to five people are allowed. Please make sure you stay 6 feet from anyone not in your household.

Skateboarding Norton elements

The skate boarders will be out in droves this weekend.

Skate Parks
Skate parks will be open on Saturday, May 22. Please make sure you stay 6 feet from anyone not in your household. Wearing a mask is highly recommended.

City Park Washrooms
Most City park washrooms will be open to the public from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

LaSalle Community Park Marina
In partnership with the LaSalle Community Park Marina Association, the public boat launch is not ready to open yet and will remain closed until further notice. It will reopen once boats have been cleared from the lower parking lot.

Tyandaga sign

Open – but try getting a T time

Tyandaga Golf Course
Tyandaga Golf Course will open for play on Saturday, May 22 at 7 a.m. Book online at tyandagagolf.com or call 905-336-0006 between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. starting today.

For a list of the Pickle Ball court locations CLICK HERE

Roads, Parks and Forestry
Services provided by the Roads, Parks and Forestry Department will continue as needed. Residents with questions or concerns can email RPF@burlington.ca or call 905-333-6166.

As the province wide vaccination rate and key public health and health care indicators improve, and City staff receives and reviews updated orders from the Province of Ontario and more details under its Roadmap to Reopen, the Parks people will continue to comply and keep you informed on available City services and what can open while keeping City of Burlington staff and residents safe.

Meed Ward at BSCI

The Mayor wants to see everyone out and about – but following the guidelines.

Mayor Marianne Meed Ward adds: “This is welcome news and something my fellow Mayors from all across Ontario have been advocating for throughout this present lockdown. We know healthcare and science experts have repeatedly stated that the risk of transmission of COVID-19 in these activities is low, and the mental and physical benefits are high.

“With warmer weather upon us, I know Burlington residents will be thrilled with this announcement. I encourage our amazing community to enjoy these activities safely, as intended, with thoughtfulness and care so that we do not risk undoing the great progress we have made in the past month in both reducing new cases and steadily increasing vaccinations. Please avoid crowding over five people at a time, and be patient to wait your turn when other groups are using amenities. When using outdoor amenities, please also be courteous and thoughtful to those who are waiting so everyone can have a turn.”

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