Tuesday, September 27, 2011

What About POVERTY?

The Ontario provincial election is upon us and voting day is October 6th. Although this is not about Davenport riding, it is about the people mliving beside us.

I submitted the following question to candidates via The Gleaner LINKhere

2. What will you (really) do about the appalling levels of poverty amongst your constituents, if elected? Not just vague promises but real, deliverable, time-dated action?

—Ken Wood

DiNovo: You’re talking to the woman who brought in the $10 minimum wage bill. And thanks to that bill, in our riding, a million Ontarians got a twenty-eight per cent raise. So that’s significant, and that was within the first six months of my being elected, and that’s as a member of the Opposition in a ten-person caucus, in a 107-person government. I’m part of the provincial legislature and I sit in Opposition Government primarily because of poverty issues. One in six children in our riding, and in our city, and in our province, live in poverty. We would definitely reassess the ODSP rates and raise them. We’ve also promised that we would be building at least 10,000 new [units] in housing every year. Also, introduce legislation to allow municipalities to call for inclusionary zoning.

Ganetakos: One of the things we’re offering that I’m really happy about is support for those who are on OW and ODSP. There are those that are working part-time and are trying to improve their quality of life and they are trying to takes steps forward. But the Liberal government claws back moneys from their paycheque. It’s a disincentive to try. Our plan is to let those on OW and ODSP to keep more of their money. It may not be possible for some, and we understand that, but we want them to have more money that they work for so that they can have more dignity in their lives.

Pasternak: Daycare is a huge issue in this riding, and one that I will be championing to make sure we have lots more, we desperately need them in this riding. Full-day kindergarten is a real, measurable investment made by the McGuinty government that helps alleviate the poverty cycle in so many ways. The other thing that we’re doing is, people may not be able to feel it, but the fact is that we just went through one of the worst recessions since the Great Depression, and we’ve come out stronger, we’ve created more jobs than the other provinces combined. The truth is, when the economy is lifted up, everyone gets lifted up.

Trottier: One Green policy area that I really think is important is the idea of taxing resource use and property use, and taxing less income and earned value. For us, we would seek to reduce income tax and one of our policies is to reduce it by a certain percentage dependent on the amount of income a person is bringing in, but in such a way that those with the smallest income, the poorest among us, would benefit the most in income reduction. We would offset [those decreased tax dollars] by increasing the tax on property and on resource use. This has the benefit of encouraging the use of currently vacant property, which is an issue right along Queen Street.

I sincerely hope people in my Davenport riding and other ridings ask their candidates about this.

Provincial election debate at the Davenport Perth Neighbourhood Centre.

Time: Thursday, September 29 · 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Location : 1900 Davenport Road (in the Sanctuary)
More Info: This is an opportunity to hear what the leading candidates have say on key issues impacting the community in Davenport. All the four leading candidates were invited. Crisitna Martins, Jonah Schein, and Fank de Jong have confirmed their participation. We hope to see you all there as well. (This is a re-scheduling of the September 12 meeting). Childcare available.