Sunday, September 12, 2010

BEDBUGS and other issues

Election Issues Under The Radar
- But Shouldn't Be


Toronto Public Health responded to more than 1,500 complaints about bedbug problems in 2009. There have been 1,076 complaints already this year.

(what Toronto is doing about it so far: )

A national problem, according to MPP Mike Colle, Toronto is seeing the biggest resurgence of the problem of all jurisdictions. * CP24/Canadian Press story -

Authorities at many levels claim they are not a public health issue and don't have to be reported as such, yet the scope of the problem and its effects are not tracked or scientifically known in Canada. There is a US based website that tries to track this across North America, but it isn't verifiable.

The effects of bedbugs can be terribly debilitating, disturbing sleep and causing great stress and anxiety, and they can be expensive to get rid of. Anyone can get them and it is not a matter of poor hygiene or social class, or whether you are a home or a business.

MPP Mike Colle is organizing a "BedBug Summit" for September 29 at the Ontario Legislature. In Ward 17, Daveport (north of ward18), new city council candidate, Jonah Schein, is running and sent this letter to The Star:

This should be an election issue discussed by every city council candidate, including the Mayors.
Note: Swedish researchers think they have found a solution - see main article CP24.

Editorial Cartoon by Patrick Corrigan, The Star Sept 12:

*** UNEMPLOYMENT - On the rise in Toronto

8.8% is the latest unemployment rate in Ontario. Some say in Toronto it is over 9%. I have also heard Youth Unemployment is nearly double that.

While our economy has done better than mosts and our banks are considered stable, forces outside our borders still can and will affect us. The U.S. economy is sputtering.

We see stories everywhere about how we've lost manufacturing and industrial jobs (really true in ward 18), and that the future is in the information knowledge worker field. Yet many of our residents work in low paid, insecure jobs. Many of our skilled tradespeople depend on continuing booming construction hopes - but how long can that last with the city worried about its finances?

Yet education levels in ward 18 are low compared to the rest of the city and kids now in the school systems are not doing as well as expected, despite our 'Education Premier', Dalton McGuinty.

How will we ensure good quality jobs for the future?

Mayoral candidate George Smitherman promises to create 7500 jobs for youth, but admits that will require higher property taxes on businesses - already taxed fairly high.