Position Primer: How we did it


Once a week from mid-July to mid-September, Women in Toronto Politics sent an online survey to every Toronto City Council candidate whose contact info we could find. The survey requested candidates’ positions on 10 issues in 500 characters or less. Our team also followed up with candidates by phone and Twitter, and encouraged our Twitter and Facebook followers to ask their candidates to do the Position Primer.

The Position Primer features answers from all candidates who completed the survey. Women in Toronto Politics did not edit the answers in any way - we present candidates’ views to you exactly as they were presented to us. Think of it like a megaphone for candidates’ voices!

WARD 8 | York West

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Click for candidates who did not complete the survey

Candidate ↓ Childcare Transportation Employment Affordable Housing Newcomers
Princess Boucher
Email
(647) 618-8596
It is very important, because there are many families, especially women who have stay at home moms and they have been away from the workforce for a long time. When these women are ready to return to work, they are not able to do so, because, their budget does not allow for childcare; they cannot afford daycare fees. The City must assist in providing more options that will allow for families to make informed choices when mothers are wanting to find jobs outside of the home. Driving downtown, and that would be a good start with the congestion that we are facing in the city, with transit for the most of it we are good, if only we can do something with the street cars and one of the thing I believe that will work is to replace them with buses. I tend to focus more on the youth employment as they are the future of our great country. So many young people finished school and cannot find a job within their fields of study.
My other area of focus is small businesses. As City Councillor I would like to work with the small businesses in my constituent and find incentives for them to hire and work with our youth, especially during the summer months.
There should be more affordable housing available for low income families and proper upgrades for the houses that already exist.
For those who wish to purchase their own home, I believe that there should be a reduction of property taxes and there must be less red tape, involved in the purchasing of homes.
I always welcome newcomers to our city, after all without them the city would not be what it is today. Whether they are visiting or setting up business they are very important to the development of our city. They also come with a great wealth of knowledge and experience.
Arthur Smitherman
Website
Email
(647) 503-0537
The City should try harder to offer Child Care options, like better utilizing schools; but ultimately it is the Federal Government that is supposed to look after it. That is unlikely to happen, so smart Councilors should be in the community to help residents be part of the solution. Everything needs to be improved; but subways are very important because they make it very interesting for developers to build more units and this has significant effects on the economy. New roads should be built with bike lanes; but installing the bike lanes on roads that are congested already will not work. More foot and bike paths through green belt would help. Programs can be helpful; but the best way to create lasting jobs is to cut taxes, better transit, and get hydro rates down. This makes it attractive for business. Manage the TCHC better, push the Province and Federal Government to pay their share - to subsidize housing. Downsize the TCHC. The TCHC is a is a 'ghetto model', it does not alleviate poverty; nor does it do any of the things it is supposed to do. Communities need to be their own solution to all problems and the City should help get them get the resources they need to accomplish their objectives.
Anthony Perruzza
Website
Email
(416) 837-2826
The city should continue to be active as the lead agency in management and delivery of child-care. The city should also expand and create more funding options for affordable child--care by advocating for families in Toronto. During my time as councillor I worked with the city to expand the subway line. Subways are fantastic, but we also need an LRT system to relieve some of the gridlock drivers experience. In addition, we need to work on a realistic plan to get the city moving. We need more bus routes, and cycling lanes to reduce the number of vehicles on the road. Employment in Toronto is an important issue, youth in particular are having a difficult time finding work. The city needs to create better infrastructure for labour force adjustment, this can include expanding transit services to make it easier for people to commute to and from work. To ensure Torontonians have access to affordable housing the city should continue to advocate for federal and provincial funding to build affordable housing. The city should also work to identify lands and sites that can be used to develop affordable housing. In addition, the city should facilitate the process of obtaining land for affordable housing by reducing permit fees. Ward 8 is home to many newcomers in Toronto, I plan to continue supporting them by adhering to the Toronto Newcomer Initiative that the city started to encourage the participation of newcomers in their communities.
Candidate ↓ Poverty Public Services Taxation Infrastructure Major Ward Issue
Princess Boucher
Email
(647) 618-8596
Poverty is a thing we cannot ignore and yes we have it here right in our city. I would like to see more shelters in various parts of the city not just downtown, more food banks and again affordable housing are absolutely necessary. In my community I would like to see that consistent garbage pickup is enforced. Also, when these trucks pick up the garbage, they MUST be accountable for those they leave in the areas. Many residents have complained that garbage is often left on the ground when they attempt to throw it in the trucks. This is a recipe for the spread of diseases and other health issues.
There is no doubt about it that in a lot of areas we need more regular and adequate bus services, including weekends.
As Council, there is not much that can be done at this level, however we can advocate for lower taxes especially for small business, low income families and seniors. Toronto is a great city. I strongly believe that we need more youth programs and recreational facilities for youth and families and most importantly, our seniors. All these things are important whether it be parks, public spaces and amenities, we want to have a community where we are proud to work, live or play and communities that we want to be proud of. One of the most pressing issue in my ward is Security. I will be making speed bumps in family neighborhood for the safety of playing children. Within the community housing I would like to see more cameras in place that are functional and maintain on a regular basis and most importantly that all doors are locked in these housing for the safety of our tenants and children.
Arthur Smitherman
Email
(647) 618-8596
Cutting taxes and improving transit is always the best way to start a poverty reduction problem; but in Toronto the City has had a war on women and children for 30 years - by misdirecting resources. Many women need the support of other women to learn new skills and coping mechanisms. A kid should never go to school hungry and the City has to feed them - this needs drastic attention. The City has to facilitate the needs of its people. For the private sector to be expected to participate in its social responsibility the City needs to be more ethical in the way it distributes resources. Give and take! No taxes! The City needs to reduce taxes, particularly property tax - to drives down the price of rent. Due to the information-technology age, coupled with globalization, it is important that the City reduce taxes and manage resources more efficiently - this will allow the City to compete in the Global economy, and not the Globalization of poverty. The City should start concentrating on priority neighborhoods, before it misdirects resources. All of the above are necessary, but the poor have been circumvented from the resources they deserve. So the City needs to drastically improve the way it delegates resources. Subways would rejuvenate the economy of Ward 8 because it has a lot of land that can be developed and the traffic from Jane and Finch can support a subway. Poverty will be a challenge; but it can be addressed thought better transit, lower taxes. and community programs.
Anthony Perruzza
Website
Email
(416) 837-2826
Poverty in Toronto has reached a crisis level and it is important that we begin to act now. Unemployment and high living costs are preventing us from reducing the poverty rate in the city, we must work towards income adequacy by creating conditions for full time employment with wages families and individuals can thrive with. The city needs to continue providing services to Torontonians so that these services remain accessible. As city councillor I have worked to freeze property taxes for seniors. Each year my office hosts property tax clinics to help seniors fill out all the paper work. One of the city's main roles it to develop community infrastructure, the city should continue to provide funding for parks and public spaces which bring communities closer together. A top issue in Ward 8 is youth unemployment, a comprehensive plan needs to be put in place to provide opportunities for youth to work for adequate wages.

Candidates who did not fill out the Position Primer: