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Pre-dawn raids sweep TO streets by dfsdf224s


									                                             VETERANS NOT FORGOTTEN                                                        ELECTRONIC THEFTS
                                             Royal Canadian Legion                                                   iPod robberies on the rise
                                             celebrates heroism - See page 4                                         among youth - See page 7

                                          THE EAST TORONTO

  • Friday • April 10 • 2009 •

Fixing                                                                                                                             Pre-dawn raids
potholes                                                                                                                           sweep T.O. streets
a bumpy                                                                                                                            Two major Scarborough gangs
ride                                                                                                                               busted; guns and drugs seized
                                                                                                                                            tEVY PilC                 Avenue. Police identified 46
     Katrina rozal                                                                                                                         The Observer               of those arrested to be associ-
        The Observer                                                                                                                                                  ated with the gangs.
                                                                                                                                      Two Scarborough gangs              “Today’s operation has
    Several medium-sized pot-                                                                                                      were the focus of a major          been one of unprecedented
holes sit on Dean Park Rd.                                                                                                         crackdow by Toronto Police         scale, exceeding even that of
about 10 metres from the in-                                                                                                       this week. A series of pre-        our previous gun and gang
tersection with Meadowvale                                                                                                         dawn raids throughout the          investigations,” Blair said.
Rd. One Observer staff mem-                                                                                                        GTA on April 1 resulted in            Police also tracked down
ber reported the potholes to                                                                                                       125 arrests and the seizure        those allegedly responsible
the city on March 31.                                                                                                              of guns, street drugs, cash        for the supply of firearms and
    Last month the city en-                                                                                                        and cars. On the morning of        illegal drugs to these criminal
couraged residents to report                                                                                                       the arrests, police dispatched     organizations. This required
potholes. They promised it                                                                                                         more than a thousand police        the assistance of other units,
would take four business                                                                                                           officers.                          particularly Durham Region-
days to repair them.                                                                                                                  The raids were a part of        al Police.
    Four business days later                                                                                                       Project Fusion, the newest            “It is the culmination of
the reported potholes were                                                                                                         program launched by Toronto        a complex and an obviously
filled with water, not asphalt.                                                                                                    Police in targeting organized      highly successful organized
But city records indicate they                                                                                                     crime. The program                          crime investigation
were filled on April 7 after an                                                                                                    began back in Sep-                          which over many
evaluation was done April 1.                                                                                                       tember, immediately                         months has identified
    A road services city work-                                                                                                     eyeing two Scarbor-                         suspects and collect-
er said there are discrepancies                                                                                                    ough gangs.                                 ed evidence.”
between city records and ac-                                                                                                          “Both the MNE                               This evidence not
tual pothole repairs. She said                                                                                                     and the 400 Crew                            only led police to
several residents complained                                                                                                       are involved in traf-                       the street gangs’ vio-
they were standing beside a                                                                                                        ficking of firearms                         lent criminal activity,
pothole they reported on sev-                                                                  PhilliP sMallEY/The Observer        and drugs. The in- BLAIR                    but also to persons
eral days before.                    Ed Flores serenades diners with a karaoke song during ‘A Night Out With Zach                  vestigation further                         and organizations re-
                                     Bandolin’ . Flores and his wife are part of a karaoke singing team. See page 5.               determined that both                        sponsible for supply-
  Main vs. side streets                                                                                                            of these criminal organiza-        ing the guns and the drugs.
                                                                                                                                   tions had resorted to violence                The day after the

                                  Teachers vote for strike action
   But some East Scarbor-                                                                                                          to advance and protect their       raid, police made three more
ough drivers are seeing im-                                                                                                        criminal enterprise,” Toronto      arrests around Markham
provements with the road re-                                                                                                       Police Chief Bill Blair said.      Road and Kingston Road in
pairs. It took the Observer                                                                                                           MNE is an acronym for           an unrelated incident, but a
reporter 40 minutes to find                                                                                                        Markham Road and Eglinton          community alert identified
Scarborough potholes to re-              MaXX sMith                 take as long as two months.   vote shows that Toronto high     Avenue while 400 Crew is           the arrests as a follow-up to
port to the city. Some of the             The Observer              Negotiations will resume af-  school teachers are very se-     a reference to an address on       the April 1 raids.
potholes familiar to the re-                                        ter that point.”              rious about getting a collec-    McCowan Road. Although                Of those arrested 50 peo-

porter, including those for-         Eighty per cent of high           The main point of conten-  tive agreement and frustrat-     the names represent the con-       ple were soon released with
merly on Morningside Road,        school teachers from the To-      tion between the two sides is ed with the Toronto District     centrated locations of the two     no charges laid. As of April
were already paved.               ronto district voted for strike   how much                                     School Board’s    groups, police clearly out-        3, when police concluded
                                                                                                                                                                      laying all charges, 80 people
   “Main streets are better
but side streets are still the
                                  action on March 31, but kids
                                  won’t be rejoicing just yet.
                                                                    time      will
                                                                                     There is no strike violation of
                                                                                                                 the conditions
                                                                                                                                   lined the vastness of their op-
                                                                                                                                   erations beyond those areas.       remained in custody for 755
same, side streets still have        “There is no strike at this    be required      at this point. The stipulated in                 A majority of the 161 war-      charges. Four of those of are
potholes,” says Andrew Ng,        point. The union only held a      from each         union only held the Provincial               rants issued were in the Scar-     under the age of 18.
a resident in the Highland        strike vote,” confirms May        teacher dur-                                 Framework         borough area, particularly at         The list of the arrests can
Creek area. “I want all roads     Moore, a spokesman for            ing the year.
                                                                                        a strike vote.           Agreement.”       a four-apartment complex at        be found on the Toronto Po-
repaired properly.”               the Toronto District School       The TDSB             - May Moore             At this rate a    Markham Road and Eglinton          lice website.
   Ng says potholes cause         Board (TDSB).                     wants teach-                                 compromise is
him to drive dangerously.            The vote in favor is only      ers to com-                                  uncertain, ac-             items seized in Project Fusion
He steers his car to avoid the    a hint at what could come         mit more time to supervis-    cording to Moore.
potholes, causing his car to      much later, not an immediate      ing students outside of class    “If both sides agree,” she       n    Two AK−47 rifles             n    $431,340 cash
swerve or go on the opposite      worry for parents, teachers,      time, with compensation for   says, “an arbitrator could be
lane.                             and students.                     doing so.                     brought in to help hammer           n   One sawed−off                 n    344 grams of
   It costs around $25 to fix         “The union is not in a le-       Meanwhile, teachers are    out a deal,” in the event that          shotgun                            crack
a pothole. Each year it costs     gal position to strike at this    maintaining that they are     neither side reaches an agree-
the city about $6 million.        time,” Moore says. “Negotia-      trained in classroom manage-  ment.                               n   759 rounds of                 n    19.39 kilos of
The city repaired more than       tions between the board and       ment and not as hall moni-       For now there is no strike,
                                                                                                                                          ammunition                         cocaine
275,000 potholes last year.       the union are on hold while       tors. The Ontario Secondary   but unless some cooperation
   If you see a pothole call      the two parties await a rul-      School Teachers’ Federation   starts happening between the
                                                                                                                                      n 30, 000 tabs of                 n    29.35 kilos of
416-599-9090, press the           ing from the Ontario Labour       (OSSTF) issued a media re-    parties, it remains a strong
pound key, followed by 164.       Relations Board which could       lease, which stated, “this    possibility                           ecstasy                              marijuana
PAGE 2 - The East Toronto Observer, April 10, 2009

If someone asks where you live...
Homelessness                     homeless person looks like
                                 is an issue many participants
                                                                                                                                                                         changed since 2006,” De
                                                                                                                                                                         Jong says.

survey to stop                   from the 2006 SNA brought
                                                                                                                                                                            A few volunteers on April
                                                                                                                                                                         15 will also be asked to be

everyone out                        “You cannot tell who is
                                 homeless,” one team leader
                                                                                                                                                                         part of control groups, to en-
                                                                                                                                                                         sure that the data collected is

on April 15
                                 said then. “If we had not spo-                                                                                                          dependable.
                                 ken to everyone we encoun-                                                                                                                 People who will take part
                                 tered, we would have missed                                                                                                             in the control groups and
      RIMa RaMOUl                the one interview we did. We                                                                                                            those acting as team lead-
        The Observer             would have overlooked this                                                                                                              ers will receive $100. Team
                                 man because he looked like                                                                                                              leaders need to have specif-
   If you get stopped on April   a university prof on his way                                                                                                            ic qualifications, however,
15 and asked if you have a       to class.”                                                                                                                              as they are required to have
place to spend the night,           So far 1,000 volunteers                                                                                                              a background in social ser-
don’t be offended.               and 300 team leaders are                                                                                                                vices.
   A citywide survey is send-    signed up to participate in
ing dozens of volunteers out     the 2009 survey, but more                                                                                                                Caring people needed
scouring the streets of Scar-    volunteers are needed.
borough looking for the                                                                                                                                                     A team leader who partici-
homeless.                           Funding decisions                                                                                                                    pated in the 2006 SNA said
    Volunteers for the second                                                                                                                                            that he was impressed by the
                                                                                                                                      RIMa RaMOUl/The Observer
Street Needs Assessment             The results of the SNA are                                                                                                           number of volunteers who
(SNA) are instructed to stop     intended to help the city de-     A man passes by the Toronto Homeless Memorial near the Eaton Centre that was                          participated.
anyone that evening, wheth-      cide what services to fund.       built to remind people of all those who died as a result of living on the streets.                       “Lots of good people
er they look homeless or not,       Data collected from the                                                                                                              still care about doing good
and ask if they have a place.    2006 SNA revealed many            Homelessness Partnership           website states that the 2006    they used the most. Now the        work,” the team leader said.
   The survey is to be carried   things, one of which was          Initiative funding was in-         survey also revealed that one   city is working to strengthen         To take part in the second
out at emergency shelters        that Aboriginal people were       vested directly into various       out of 10 homeless people       that area.                         Street Needs Assessment
and neighbourhood streets        largely represented among         Aboriginal     organizations,      did want permanent housing         “The purpose of doing           program, call 416-397-5224,
around the city, including       the homeless.                     project manager Iain De            and help getting it.            the 2009 Street Needs As-          or visit
Scarborough.                        As a result of this finding,   Jong says.                           They also said that drop-in   sessment is to see how the            The last day to sign up is
   The stereotype of what a      20 per cent of all Federal           The City of Toronto             centers were the top service    population and needs have          April 14.

There may be                                                                                                                          Displaced residents
money in your                                                                                                                         sue over explosion
                                                                                                                                        COURtney ROBeRtS                emotional distress and the
                                                                                                                                                The Observer            inconvenience of being dis-
                                                                                                                                                                        placed. Its an arbitrary figure
                                                                                                                                         Residents of 3650 Kings-       that will have to be decided
                                                                                                                                      ton Rd., still displaced after    by the court.”

Rebates for rental renovations                                                                                                        an electrical explosion more
                                                                                                                                      than three weeks ago, say
                                                                                                                                                                           The calculation also de-
                                                                                                                                                                        pends on how much lon-
                                                                                                                                      they are filing a class action    ger residents are away from
                                                                                                                                      suit against Toronto Hydro.       home.

   Matthew alleyne               unit in their homes. Besides                                                                            Dolly Andrews, who has            According to Andrews,
        The Observer             the general work permit that                                                                         been moved three times since      one good thing came out of
                                 can be obtained at the Scar-                                                                         the     explosion,                             the explosion.
    With the increased need      borough Civic Centre, hom-                                                                           said she is glad         We never                 “It’s great to
for affordable housing in        eowners must ensure the unit                                                                         residents are tak-     thought we              see how we all
Scarborough, and a larger
enrolment at U of T Scar-
                                 has separate tenant parking,
                                 outside entrance, bathroom
                                                                                                                                      ing action.
                                                                                                                                         “All [Toronto
                                                                                                                                                             were going justincame togeth-
                                                                                                                                                                                     er      this time,”
borough, many families and       and kitchen, and a fire barri-                                                                       Hydro is] saying        to be away said Andrews.
students are looking for a       er between the basement and                                                                          is a couple more       for so long.               “We        never
“clean and quiet” place to       the upper level.                                                                                     weeks,” Andrews                                thought we were
call home, says Ryan Loy of         “The various requirements                                                                         said. “We had
                                                                                                                                                                  - Dolly            going to be away
Scarborough.                     of the city are not there to                                                                         to get that from          Andrews              for so long.”
                                                                                                   Matthew alleyne/The Observer
   Homeowners looking for        make it difficult for hom-                                                                           them because no-                                  Andrews still
a way to bring in some extra     eowners to create a second        A Scarborough basement has been renovated into a                   body would tell                                hasn’t been told
income could stand to bene-      dwelling, but for the safety      home for a second family.                                          us anything.”                     when she’ll be able to move
fit from this, by using their    of the tenants and the land-                                                                            The residents are suing To-    back home.
basement as a rental prop-       lord,” says Theo Lawrence,        2009 and February 1, 2010.         can range from $5,000 to        ronto Hydro and the builder          After staying at a commu-
erty.                            of the City of Toronto.              According to the Canadi-        $50,000 depending on what       in hopes of gaining compen-       nity center for a few days,
   “With many apartments                                           an Revenue Agency (CRA),           needs to be done.”              sation for the time and money     residents were told to contact
the rent is too high, and you      Tax rebate available            the work can be done on a             The 15 per cent means a      they have lost due to the ex-     their insurance companies.
have to worry about pests,                                         home, cottage or condomin-         maximum of $1,350 cash          plosion.                          Andrews was told her policy
whether it is clean and the        The government is offer-        ium unit. It can range from        back, but shopping around          They have served the de-       would cover only her hotel
noise level,” said Loy.          ing an incentive for hom-         kitchen renovations and new        can reveal retailers and con-   fendants and will go before a     stay for two weeks, she said.
   “I know a lot of people       eowners to spruce up their        bathrooms to renovating and        tractors offering incentives    judge to see if the action can       She buys all of her meals
who feel more comfortable        homes for themselves and          finishing a basement.              for your business. For exam-    be certified as a class action    because there isn’t much place
in basement apartments be-       possible tenants: a 15 per                                           ple, Home Depot is offering     suit.                             to store and cook food and still
cause it feels more like a       cent tax rebate for home ren-        Incentives offered              up to a $1,000 in gift cards       How much they might re-        doesn’t have all of her cloth-
home, and frankly it is a        ovations.                                                            to customers looking to take    ceive if they are successful      ing from her apartment.
lot cheaper than most other        The Home Renovation                “The cost of renovating a       advantage of the HRTC           depends on a number of fac-          Visit kingstonroadclassac-
places.”                         Tax Credit (HRTC) is appli-       basement can vary depend-                                          tors, said Ted Charney, one of for info.
   Toronto homeowners must       cable on services and goods       ing on several factors,” says      For details on require-         the lawyers representing the
follow certain procedures        between $1,000 and $10,000        Tom Kentros of ATK Gen-            ments, see torontoobserv-       residents.                        For an interview clip, see
when creating a basement         spent between January 27,         eral Construction Ltd. “It                             “It’s a combination of
                                                                                                                                                 The East Toronto Observer, April 10, 2009 - PAGE 3


Building a business centre of health, hope
                                                                                                              gesilayeFa azorbo              who have either lost their        income, and if you can invest
                                                                                                                    The Observer             jobs or fear for their job se-    into something it’s going to
                                                                                                                                             curity.                           always be yours.”
                                                                                                               The medical retail plaza         Site superintendent Rick          The plaza is also a good
                                                                                                            being built at 1145 Morning-     Sheppard can relate to these      business investment because
                                                                                                            side Ave. has an innovative      situations. He hasn’t always      of several medical-related
                                                                                                            selling point for prospective    worked in construction.           businesses planned, High-
                                                                                                            business owners: rather than        “My full-time job was in       class and Sheppard said. In
                                                                                                            just leasing, they can buy       the manufacturing sector          addition to a pizza place, res-
                                                                                                            their units outright.            of the automotive market,”        taurants, and salons, the pla-
                                                                                                               “We give the opportunity      Sheppard said. “The money         za is to include pharmacies,
                                                                                                            for the business owners to be-   was good, the benefits were       dentists and similar business-
                                                                                                            come landlords themselves,”      good.”                            es not found in the area.
                                                                                                            said Hannif Highclass.              But when the factory              The multiculturalism of
                                                                                                               Highclass is one of the       closed, he decided to follow      the area will also be repre-
                                                                                                            group of developers behind       his true love, construction.      sented in the businesses set to
                                                                                                            the construction of Chand           “In the economic times         occupy the plaza.
                                                                     gesilayeFa azorbo/The Observer         Morningside Plaza. He said       we’re in now, people that            It should be completed by
Site supervisor Rick Sheppard, surveys the construction of a proposed medical busi-                         that using this business mod-    have lost their jobs are forced   August, after which tenants
ness plaza near Morningside and Milner Avenues.                                                             el gives hope to those people    to find other ways to make an     can move in..

Blood typed at health fair                                                                                                                                                     City ok’s
                                                                                                                                                                               new hires
Rouge Valley                       transfusion.
                                      Other booths presented pri-
                                                                         Owens said.
                                                                            The Look Good Feel Better                                                                              stephanie leung

holds annual                       vate homecare services. These
                                   caregivers provide in-home
                                                                         booth was devoted to another
                                                                         aspect of cancer. It is a char-
                                                                                                                                                                                        The Observer

info session                       assistance to patients. They
                                   provide help for pre- and post-
                                                                         ity program that helps wom-
                                                                         en with cancer rediscover
                                                                                                                                                                                  East Scarborough unem-
                                                                                                                                                                               ployment may be eased by
                                   natal care, palliative care and       their beauty. They offer a free                                                                       the hiring of more workers in
                                   meal planning.                        workshop where beauty ex-                                                                             the city’s 2009 budget, Ward
        laura ross                                                       perts teach the women make-                                                                           44 councillor Ron Moeser
         The Observer                  Raising awareness                 up tricks to hide the effects of                                                                      says.
                                                                         chemotherapy. Courtesy of                                                                                It should also provide more
   A prick of your finger could       April being Cancer Aware-          the Canadian Cosmetic,                                                                                staff and funding for local fa-
save your life.                    ness Month, several booths               There was also a reading of                                                                        cilities, he said.
   The Canadian Blood Ser-         were devoted to the subject.          Like Fish Out of Water: Men                                                                              “All the new staff will help
vices showed how at the fourth     One booth’s volunteer, reg-           Being Helpful to Women with                                                                           East Scarborough improve
annual Rouge Valley Centena-       istered nurse Lisa Owens,             Cancer, written by Dr. Ross                                                                           our water facilities and rec-
ry Health Fair at Rouge Valley     works in the Chemotherapy             Gray and Dr. Karen Fergus                                                                             reation centres,” Ron Moes-
Hospital on April 2.               Clinic at Centenary.                  based on their research and in-                                                                       er said.
   The blood service was one          Her booth had pamphlets            terviews with real men whose                                                                             The city passed an $8.7-bil-
of a dozen booths staffed by       about each kind of cancer             wives have cancer.                                                                                    lion budget on March 31, in-
volunteers to inform the pub-      and a model breast with four             The script’s development                                                                           cluding the hiring of more
lic on healthcare issues.          lumps in it. The model was            was sponsored by the Cana-                                                                            than 1,000 new city staff and
   At the blood-typing booth,      used to give an example of            dian Cancer Society and was                                                                           a four per cent property tax
they pricked each visitor’s fin-   what tumours feel like. The           read by Patrick Black, Janet                                                                          increase. However, Ward 37
ger, dropped three drops into      earlier cancer is found, the          Canavan and Paul Soren. It                                                                            councillor Michael Thomp-
various chemicals and within       easier it is to treat before it has   aims to bring awareness to the                                                                        son dislikes the proposal.
a minute could tell blood type     a chance to spread.                   struggles these men face and                                                                             “I didn’t support the hir-
and Rh factor — what deter-           “That’s why this fair is           gives tips on how they can                                                                            ing of new staff for the city
mines whether the blood is         about awareness, prevention           support their wives.                                                                                  because it wasn’t necessary,”
positive or negative. This in-     and promoting health, telling                                                                                laura ross/The Observer        Thompson said. “One needs
formation could save your          people how to stay healthy so         For more on this story, visit      Registered nurse Lisa Owens displays a simulation                  to recognize that it isn’t the
life if you need an emergency      they don’t end up in hospital,”             breast intended to help women identify lumps.                      time to bring in more staff.”

News Briefs

Gun found after                    LRT still in                          Rouge Valley                       Murder suspect                   Local resident                    Gunfight in park
daytime robbery                    the works                             park expands                       named                            wins $4 million                   after party
Police arrested two teens          Provincial funding for the            City and federal officials         Police released the identity     Waclaw Chwala of Scar-            A man, 23, was sent to
and seized a firearm after         Sheppard East light rapid             proposed a plan to triple          of another suspect wanted        borough recently won              hospital with an abdomen
receiving a call about a           transit line is still in the          the size of Rouge Valley Park      in the Alexis Eracleous          $3,993,367 playing Lotto          wound on April 5 after
break-and-enter near Finch         works but the TTC is going            and turn it into a national        murder case. A male, identi-     6/49. The draw occured on         a fight at a house party
Avenue and Middlefield             ahead with work on the                park. The proposal would           fied as Verette Andrew           March 25 but Chwala didn’t        turned into a gunfight at a
Road April 1. Police say two       $944-million project, says            increase Canada’s largest          Jno-Baptiste, 24, is wanted      know about the win until          nearby park, police report.
males fled the scene and           chief general manager Gary            urban park by 28,000 acres.        for second-degree murder.        April 1 and thought it was        Police were called to the
hopped a fence around              Webster.                              City councillor Glenn De           Baptiste is described as         an April Fool’s joke at first.    park near Morningside Av-
12:40 p.m. Two males were          This week Dalton McGuinty             Baermaker and Conserva-            black with a dark complex-       The ticket was purchased          enue and Lawrence Avenue
arrested and a revolver was        announced the province                tive MP Michael Chong              ion, five-foot-nine, with        at a hardware store on            East around midnight on
seized following a brief           would fund three projects             have strongly supported            short hair, glasses, and         Markham Road. Chwala              Sunday. The fight allegedly
chase. The males, ages 15          in the LRT transit plan but           the idea which would create        jewelry on his teeth. Any-       plans to use the winnings to      began at a house near Dan-
and 16, were charged with          Sheppard East wasn’t one              a natural landbank on the          one with info is asked to call   purchase a house and help         zig Street and continued
breaking and entering.             of them.                              city’s east side.                  416-808-7400.                    family members.                   outside.
PAGE 4 - The East Toronto Observer, April 10, 2009


            Legion honours veterans
            Soldiers from World War II and the Korean War share their wisdom and experiences

                                                                                                                                            Photos by AmAndA Ly/The Observer
            War vets in uniform stand at attention at the Highland Creek Branch on April. 5 to commemorate their service in WWII and the Korean war.

                      ou won’t see their stories in textbooks, but the hero-                                        out homes, no source of income, little kids poorly dressed,
                      ism of these men and women changed history. And                                               and very little food. It was very sad to see that. The whole
                      the Royal Canadian Legion is making sure they are                                             country was blown apart. I never want to see that again.”
            not forgotten.                                                                                             War vets often don’t want to recall violent and traumatiz-
                On April 5, the Highland Creek Branch honoured over                                                 ing experiences.
            300 World War II and Korean War veterans, many of whom                                                     “I don’t normally like talking about things like that be-
            recalled their wartime memories. Last year 400 attended. The                                            cause I put it out of mind and that’s where I like to keep it,”
            number dwindles down every year as vets die.                                                            said Eric Pierson, a WWII navy mechanic.
                Clifford B. Guest, 103, was the oldest vet in attendance,    Amanda Ly                                 But sometimes the story is written on their face.
            but didn’t look a day over 80. The former wing commander                                                   A scar from a shrapnel marks Alyre Gallant’s right

            of the Royal Canadian Air Force served in the military from                                           cheek. Gallant was a tank gunner in the invasion of Normandy.
            1940 to 1944 and credits his wife for convincing him to join the war.                                      “I’ve seen a guy’s head blown up, but you’re not sure
                “I’m very proud of the work Canadians did,” Guest said.                  I’m very         what you’ve done most of the time. A shell would explode and maybe
                But his greatest achievement is his 60-year marriage. He and his       proud of the       10, 15 people got killed, but you couldn’t see because it was so far
            wife started with a combined income of $1,500 a year, but when                                away,” Gallant said.
            Guest’s wife lost her job as a teacher, they never went into debt, he
                                                                                           work               “I came out of it pretty good, except for a little bit of arthritis and
            said. “She was a wonderful woman. You get the wrong girl, she can           Canadians         a sore ankle. Then I got home and got married.”
            make you bankrupt.”                                                             did               When they came home there was no military or government sup-
                To our troops in Afghanistan, Guest stressed the importance of find-                      port unless they were severely disabled. To be honoured and recon-
            ing the right partner to spend your life with.
                                                                                        - Clifford B.     nect with their peers is something they won’t forget, the vets said.
                Irizawa Takao, 79, a second-generation Japanese Canadian lived             Guest,         They also stressed the importance of supporting our troops in Afghan-
            in Vancouver when the Korean War broke out. Discrimination made it         RCAF veteran       istan. The Wounded Warriors fund takes care of soldiers coming back
            impossible for Takao to have a white-collar job, so in 1950 he joined                         from Afghanistan and around the world. Their next fundraising event
            the military and worked in payroll, he said.                                                  will be a concert on April. 19 at Winston Churchill C.I. For ticket
                While in Korea and Japan, Takao saw things he still cannot get over.                    information call 416-759-0164.
                “I found it very disconcerting. All the people were dislocated with-                                                 For more photos visit

            Left to right: Clifford B. Guest, Irizawa Takao, Tom Storey, Eric Pierson, and the Gallant brothers proudly show off their medals and share their painful
            and sometimes funny stories of their war experiences.
                                                                                                                                              The East Toronto Observer, April 10, 2009 - PAGE 5

                                                                                                                                                 ARTS & LIFE

Silver screen
calls out to
   anthony Geremia                  submit will be able to “moti-
        The Observer                vate themselves to go all the
                                    way out in terms of their film-
   Filmmakers are as impor-         making.” By impressing a
tant as bankers, Henry Wong         professional crowd, he says,
is setting out to prove.            participants will not only get
   That’s why he’s organiz-         to showcase their work but
ing the first annual Toronto        also get feedback, to help
Youth Film Festival, seeking        them improve on any future
submissions from amateur            endeavours.
filmmakers from universities           Wong has even struck a
across the GTA.                     deal with Cineplex to show
   “Just because someone’s          the films on one of their
made something, and it may          screens, charging half the
not stimulate the economy           normal admission.
as directly as, say, a banker
would, that does not mean                   how to win
that the thoughts and perspec-
tives of this person does not          Submissions will be judged
reflect society,” Wong says.        based on their storytelling
   He’s looking for entries         prowess, and how the screen-
that “demonstrate both an art       writers, performers, editors,
and a social commentary of          and cinematographers tell the
some sort.”                         tale. Aside from this, as long
                                    as the work is professional,
     help for students              anything goes.                                                      michael Smith/The Observer
                                        “Films could be as sim-
   Wong wants the submis-           ple as demonstrating the val-
sions from filmmakers age           ue of friendship,” Wong says.
18 to 26, with preference giv-      “Or they could talk about the                                                                                                          PhilliP Smalley/The Observer
en to students. The goal is         meaning of life.“                 “A night out with Bandolin and friends,” concert headliner Zach Bandolin entertains the audience with his guitar.
to motivate students to pro-           Subjects could be as sim-

                                                                      Music sets the mood
duce high-quality work, as          ple as how videogames affect
opposed to “stuff that people       your life, or as profound as
like to put on YouTube sim-         doctors being given the right
ply for the sake of putting it      to decide who lives and who
up,” Wong says.                     dies.
   “Just because it’s cheap            Anything you can imagine
doesn’t mean it has to suck.”       can be made into a film. Par-
   Wong wants to encourage
development of the craft, as
                                    ticipants are encouraged to be
                                    creative and stick to their vi-
                                                                      Out-of-town supporters groove to Bandolin’s jazzy guitar tunes
many students end up push-          sion
ing their filmmaking to the            The grand prize will be            PhilliP Smalley               We learned a lot and the ex-     opening acts, but in this case,    rounds. But he did made sure
side, where it becomes more         presented at an awards cere-              The Observer              perience and feedback will       I’m not sure,” Jones said.         to plug his next gig at the Au-
of a hobby.                         mony at Centennial College                                          definitely help us to improve       Well, the openers did not       gusta House in Kensington
   The plan is to screen the        on Progress Ave.                     Oh Canada is playing, but      our future events.”              disappoint, with equally im-       Market on May 29 before ev-
submissions in June before             More information can be        it’s not the version you would       The spectacle began just      pressive amounts of talent         eryone emptied out.
a crowd of journalists and          found on the festival’s web-      expect. More of a Jimi Hen-       after 7 p.m. as a nice roast     and skill between them.               That too will be represent-
film scholars, so those who         site      drix take, with the regular en-   beef dinner was served, while       Also, Abby de Guzman            ed by Your Night Out Enter-
                                                                      semble replaced by a single       the husband-wife team of Ed      sang with Bandolin on a cou-       tainment Company, and they

                                                                      guitarist.                        and Judith Flores serenad-       ple of his tunes and really got    are looking forward to doing
                                                                         The man with the guitar        ed diners with renditions of     the crowd’s attention with her     more shows with local talent.
                                                                      looks up with his eyes closed     Celine Dion,                                      soulful voice.       While the talent is there, it
                                                                      as he hits the notes more from    Frank Sinatra                                        But     the    is in need of more local sup-
                                                                      instinct than from practice.      and other clas-      We learned a lot highlight                     port in order to flourish.
                                                                         His name is Zach Bandolin      sics.                 and the experi- of the night
                                                                      and he is the headliner. Ban-        Bandolin’s         ence and feed- was definite-                      local fans miss out
                                                                      dolin has played his moody        keyboard play-                                    ly at the end
                                                                      style of instrumental music       er Ken Jones           back will defi- when Man-                       “Surprisingly,        there
                                                                      on stages in Japan and Ger-       had rehearsed          nitely help us             gaser, Lopez      weren’t that many Scarbor-
                                                                      many, and now he’s playing        with him only         to improve our and Bandolin                   ough locals that attended the
                                                                      to Scarborough.                   a couple of                                       all took turns    show,” Paragas said.
                                                                                                        times before           future events              flipping ham-         “Most people were from
                                                                             a huge success             and was un-              - Jen Paragas            mer-ons and       Mississauga,        Brampton,
                                                                                                        aware of what                                     pull-offs.        downtown and even as far as
                                                                         The Burrows Hall Com-          to expect from                                       They had       Sarnia.It’s nice to know that
                                                                      munity Center was host to         the evening.                     all joined together for a big      people are willing to travel to
                                                                      “A night out with Zach Ban-          “It will be interesting to    solo-exchanging finale.            enjoy the event.
                                                                      dolin and friends” Saturday       see what this is like,” he said,    “By what we have heard              “We hope this will con-
                                                                      evening.                          right before the music start-    here tonight, these guys have      tinue in the future, and that
                                                                         It was a first for new-        ed.                              a lot of potential,” Bandolin      more people from Scarbor-
                                                                      ly formed Your Night Out             He was referring to the       said.                              ough will join us too.”
                                                                      Entertainment, and rep Jen        other two acts: Peter Man-          Bandolin, a man of few
                                 anthony Geremia/The Observer         Paragas was pleased with the      gaser, and Joshua Lopez and      words but very many notes,         To view more photos of the
Aspiring filmmakers get a chance to screen their films                result.                           his band.                        graciously thanked the au-         concert, visit torontoob-
at the first annual Toronto Youth Film Festival.                         “Overall, it was successful.      “Sometimes they are just      dience before he made his
PAGE 6 - The East Toronto Observer, April 10, 2009

COMMENT                                                                                                                                                                          The East Toronto

East Scarborough
crime overblown
         he East Toronto Observer is written, produced, and
         distributed by journalism students. While studying
         the media we have noticed trends in the way it reports
crimes. As a locally based publication we are responsible for
covering events in east Scarborough, specifically, the com-
munities east of Markham Road and south of Finch Avenue,
home to beautiful areas like the Scarborough Bluffs and the
Rouge River Valley. However, the reputations of some of its
other neighbourhoods are not so flattering. Malvern, Galloway,
Tuxedo Court, Mornelle Court, and Markham and Eglinton
also fall within our coverage area.
  As students of journalism we have a unique perspective into
how the media selects stories and gives them priority in the
news. From covering stories of all types in these areas we also
see that there is more going on than just gang violence.
  Major news entities are not misconstruing the facts though.
Crimes do occur and major news outlets, just like us, have a
duty to inform citizens about what is happening in their city.
But why do editors seem to insist on giving precedence to
certain types of crimes in certain neighbourhoods?
 From day one we have been told “if it bleeds, it leads.”
Violent stories tend to attract attention and thus, maximize
readership. However, the public relies on the media as a means
of gaining an understanding of their surroundings. Maybe it’s
because almost all of the major papers are based in Toronto,
but a murder in this city often makes the front page country-
   Conversely, crime in Manitoba tends not to get national
media coverage. That province, which has a population of over                                                                                                                             teVY PILC/The Observer
1.2 million people, recorded 62 homicides in 2007. In the same

                                                                       Taking the worry out of purchasing
year, Toronto, with a population of about 2.5 million people
recorded 84 homicides. Only 11 of those murders occured in
our coverage area.
    As journalists, we travel across east Scarborough at all
hours of the day and night. We go to areas we are unfamiliar
with and talk to complete strangers, all the while carrying
expensive camera equipment in full view.
                                                                       Car producers need to give consumers economic assurance
 We have never had any problems and have found the people

of this area to be friendly, helpful, and sometimes a bit shy. We              recently came across a television                                                       My sister is one of the few in the
are not accusing the mass media of any wrong-doing.                            commercial advertising Kia’s                                                         market for a car. She told me she never
  If a homicide happens here, then by all means, report it. It                 “Worry-Free Purchasing” incen-                                                       would have considered even looking at
is just rare to hear or read “Scarborough” in the news without         tive. The concept is based on offering                                                       a Kia until seeing this commercial. This
some sort of crime being mentioned in the same sentence. With          security when everything is insecure. It                                                     made me wonder, why aren’t all auto
all the negative press being given to the area, we just thought it     is a warranty of sorts that allows a buy-                                                    companies offering this kind of assur-
was right to set the record straight.                                  er to return their vehicles if they suf-                                                     ance? When it’s clear that assurance is
                                                   - Tristan Carter    fer job loss 12 months following the               Kareen AWADALLA                           what consumers are really looking for,
                                                                       purchase. It got me thinking about the                                                       why not give it to them, especially if
                                                                       current fearful buyer’s market that has                                                      it means keeping your dealership from

Trail to nowhere                                                       forced major industries to take a step
                                                                       back and evaluate their long-term cir-
                                                                       cumstances. But today, inside many Ca-
                                                                                                                        truth. For the most part,auto executives
                                                                                                                        have been sitting in their offices won-
                                                                                                                        dering how on earth they can make a
                                                                                                                                                                    going under? For example, take a look
                                                                                                                                                                    at Davidson Chrysler or Bob Johnson
                                                                                                                                                                    Chevrolet (both formerly on Kingston
                                                                       nadian homes, big ticket purchases are           pitch to the public, and convince them      Road closed their doors).

          s spring approaches, litter on the ground around us          unlikely to be scribbled onto the average        that financing a new vehicle is a good         What you probably aren’t aware of
          is revealed. Meanwhile, the Toronto Region and               grocery list.                                    idea.                                       is that each and every dealership has
          Conservation Authority is using tax dollars to build a                                                           I challenge them to sell this idea to    the capacity to offer a service that of-

waterfront trail around the city of Toronto. They call it erosion                Fear and hesitation                    those who haven’t al-                                       fers programs like that of
control. However, it’s really a waste of money.
Instead of building a waterfront trail, the city should be                So naturally, fear and hesitation is
                                                                                                                        ready damaged their
                                                                                                                        credit enough in the
                                                                                                                                                       I challenge them “Worry-Free Purchasing”
                                                                                                                                                                                    through a financing com-
cleaning up the beaches that surround the city, especially in          a major concern for the auto industry.           wake of the recession.           to sell this idea pany called Walkaway.
Scarborough.                                                           The sales manager at a Ford dealership           If I am one of the lucky          to those who              My suggestion is if you
    One of the most neglected and polluted beaches is the one
at Galloway and Guildwood beneath the bluffs. The beach is
                                                                       didn’t seem to think so when I spoke
                                                                       to him though. He actually tried to tell
                                                                                                                        ones hanging on to a
                                                                                                                        job right now, who’s to
                                                                                                                                                        haven’t already are feeling the slightestgo
                                                                                                                                                                                    need to purchase a car,
littered with beer bottles and graffiti, and the water is full of E.   me sales are going “very well”. Funny,           say that won’t change?           damaged their to walkawayprotection.
coli. Moreover, there is a chemical plant nearby, which could          since Ford Motor Company’s stocks just           This would not come as                 credit...            com and look through a
easily be dumping chemicals into the water.                            fell last week.                                  a shock, because I’ve al-                                   list of authorized Walk-
    People fear to swim in Lake Ontario because of the water              Apparently, Ford “isn’t interested in         ways felt that there is so                                  away retailers near you.
pollution. This is highly unfortunate, especially during the           gimmicky bails.. With all the bailouts           much more that we, as the working class     Maybe showing other auto companies
hot summer. It would be energy efficient and environmentally           the auto industry has been asking for, it        middlemen, will continually be restrict-    they are lacking will save them from go-
friendly to clean up the beaches and treat the water, rather than      sounds like someone is not telling the           ed from being privy to.                     ing under, too.
have people go swimming in chlorine-filled pools.
    Freshwater lakes are theoretically less harmful. However,
with all the pollutants dumped in the lake and along beaches,
they are even more harmful to humans and wildlife. And fewer           the east toronto OBSeRVeR
people can even use public pools anymore, since so many of
                                                                       EDITORIAL BOARD                                                   The East Toronto Observer Serving Malvern, West Hill and Highland Creek
them are closing down permanently as a way to save money.
                                                                       Managing Editor: Tristan Carter                                is published by University of Toronto/Centennial College journalism students
    The city is wasting money building useless concrete                                                                               under faculty supervision. We are located at the Centennial HP Science and
                                                                       Assignment Editor: Selena Mann
waterfront trails. If the city wants to use taxes to protect the                                                                      Technology Centre. Please address correspondence to The East Toronto Ob-
                                                                       Copy Editors: Kareen Awadalla, Anthony Geremia
environment they should actively employ workers to clean up                                                                           server, c/o Centennial College, 755 Morningside Ave., Toronto, ON M1C 5J9,
                                                                       Photo Editor: Phil Smalley                                     416-289-5000, ext. 8306, fax 416-289-5168. Email: HPObserver@centennialcol-
Toronto’s beaches. By doing so, they would also be helping the         Production Editor: Monica Valencia                    The opinions expressed in The Observer do not necessarily reflect the
economy by creating more jobs, greener jobs.                           Online Editor: Lauren Hummel                                   views of the college. The Toronto Observer, a companion website, is at www.
                                                     - Selena Mann     Faculty Editors: Eric McMillan and Andrew Mair       
                                                                                                                                           The East Toronto Observer, April 10, 2009 - PAGE 7


iPod thefts increasing in Scarborough
                                                                         Minimums Upped
                                                                         The Ontario minimum wage jumps to $10.25 by
                                                                         March 31 2010.



         Tevy PILc                    In that report, four youths
         The Observer              approached a 17-year-old

   Police are warning resi-
dents about a recent rise in
                                   man near Ellesmere and Bel-
                                   lamy Rds. around 10 p.m. The
                                   victim was pushed against a
                                                                      Wage increase troubles local businesses
iPod thefts.                       fence but has no injuries.
   “School-age youths” are            They stole an iPod and a             KATRINA ROZAL                year’s scheduled raise will  I only have one girl working          But some small business
targetting other young                       metropass       before           The Observer              climb to $10.25 an hour.     for me now.”                       workers who still have their
people with hand-                            fleeing the scene                                             Other businesses say they    Morningside Health Foods        jobs welcome the wage in-

held electronic de-                          southbound, behind          Ontario’s plan to contin-      are concerned about the ex-  is finding its customers are       crease.
vices, according to 43                       the Centennial Are-      ue increasing the minimum         tra     work                                   complain-           “I think people who work
Division police.                             na.                      wage is finding opposition        they have to      Desperate times              ing more         minimum wage deserve it be-
   “It’s not just iP-                           The four youths       among local businesses.           do because        call for desperate about the                  cause they often put in long
ods, but all types of                        are between 16 and          “Desperate times call for      they’ve been                                   rise in pric-    and odd hours, so I think it’s
electronic     devices                       18 years old.            desperate measures and right      unable     to measures and right es                   these     justified,” says Maria Tsuru-
are such items get-                             Police have re-       now with the economy I don’t      take on staff        now with the              days, says       da at Highland Creek Phar-
ting stolen frequently,” Const.    ceived reports of stolen iPods     think it’s such a good idea,”     in the past        economy I don’t             manag-           macy.
Bill Campbell says. “There         almost every day in the past       says Sam Abbas, manager at        year.                                          er Sylvia           Others offer mixed feel-
seems to be a fear from those      two months. Most victims re-       Markville Video Superstore           “We just        think it’s such a           Kim, who         ings towards the changing
robbed to report them to either    port being attacked by more        in the Port Union area.           can’t    hire           good idea              also disap-      pay rate.
their parents or police. If peo-   than one person.                      The store recently let staff   the way we - Sam Abbas, Markville proves the                       Several young adults who
ple aren’t reporting the inci-        Campbell says victims are       go due to lower revenues.         used     to,”                                  minimum          live in the Rouge Valley area
dent, police are left unable to    not inclined to report these       The hike in minimum wage          says Donna          Video Superstore           wage in-         and attend U of T’s Scarbor-
help.”                             thefts to either the police or     would just increase their dif-    Paterson at                                    crease.          ough campus say they are
   The last report of a stolen     their parents because they are     ficulties by increasing ex-       the Highland                                      Scarbor-      glad to have an increased
iPod in 43 Division was on         afraid of getting into trouble.    penses, he says.                  Creek Supermarket. “But it’s ough has 1,800 small busi-         salary but they are skeptical
March 22, nearly a week be-           Police advise youth to re-         The     minimum       wage     not like we can do anything  nesses. They make up 60 per        about the impact it will have
fore the community alert was       frain from displaying these de-    jumped from $8.75 to $9.50        about it. There’s just a lot cent of the area’s total busi-     on small businesses and on
sent out.                          vices when out on the streets.     an hour on March 31. Next         more work to do around here. ness establishments.               inflation.


Whistle blows on another season
ceLesTe de mueLeNAeRe                                                 OFSAA curling Champion-
         The Observer                  Mowat season                   ship.
                                        highlights                       Two other Scarborough
   As spring arrives, high                                            schools, Cardinal New-
school winter sports in Scar-                                         man Catholic Secondary
                                      n Senior girls Tier II
borough have come to a                hockey champs                   School and R.H. King Acad-
close.                                                                emy failed to advance in the
   The Sir Oliver Mowat Col-          n Girls city curling            championship.
legiate boy’s hockey team             champs                             The bright light at OFSAA
made it to the Ontario Feder-                                         championships for Scarbor-
ation of School Athletic As-          n Girls AAA vol-                ough teams was in hoops.
sociations (OFSAA) quad-A             leyball champs                     Two Scarborough schools,
hockey semi-finals only to                                            West Hill and Mother Te-
                                      n Senior boys Tier I
be defeated by Upper Canada                                           resa Catholic High School,
                                      city hockey champs
College in a 3-2 loss.                                                both qualified for the quad-A
   The Birchmount Park                                                championships.
quad-A girls team suffered                                               The Mother Teresa Ti-
a similar loss in the semi-fi-                                        tans managed to make it all
nals, when Bishop Tonnos                                              the way to the finals after
of Ancaster beat them 2-0.         the Mowat girl’s team failing      an impressive 60-44 victory
Birchmount Park went on to         to make it to the playoffs.        over defending OFSAA gold
win of 2-1 over East York             Their preliminary round         medalists, Pickering High
Collegiate in the consolation      record of 3-1 failed to save       School. The Eastern Com-
quarterfinals.                     them in a three-way tie, with      merce Saints of east Toronto
   In curling Scarborough          North Park and Centennial          narrowly defeated the Titans                                                                     PhILLIP smALLey/The Observer
teams didn’t fare well, with       also vying to compete in the       50-49 in the final.               Mowat senior girls in action at last month’s semi-finals. They won Tier II at OFSAA.

Sports Briefs

Figure skaters                     Umpiring for the                   Midget girls go                   B-ballers head                  Soccer sign-up                  High school
soar in L.A.                       Blue Hawks                         to nationals                      out west                        kicks off                       season on deck
Vanessa Crone and Paul             The West Hill Baseball             Scarborough Sharks Midget         Scarborough Basketball          Registration for the Scar-      The high school baseball
Poirier of the Scarborough         League is looking for um-          AA girls hockey are the           Association hosts its 10th      boro Azzurri Soccer Club        season opens up April 27.
Figure Skating Club placed         pires. If you are 13 or older      first Ontario team to go to       summer camp at Hoop-            starts on April 18 at 9 a.m.    Mowat squares off against
12th at the world champi-          and are interested in finding      national championships.           dome at Downsview Park.         to 1 p.m. at the Agincourt      David & Mary Thomson at
onships in L. A. The results       a summer job, call Peter           The Sharks beat the Whitby        Coaches from Mother Teresa      Recreation Centre. For more     Heron Park at 1 p.m. West
determine the spots avail-         Mathews at 416-283-6088.           Wolves at the provincials         and Pope John Paul II will      information, contact 416-       Hill and Bethune will follow
able for each country in the       Umpire training will happen        on March 29. They go to           attend. Pick up is at Centen-   754-4307 or visit scarboro-     that game at 3 p.m. on the
2010 Winter Olympics.              in early May.                      Calgary for the finals.           nial’s Progress campus.                    same field.
PAGE 8 - The East Toronto Observer, April 10, 2009

Awards celebrate local volunteers                                                                                                                                         Centre
                                                                                                                                                                          to bring
                                   and Immigration to recognize
  GeSIlayeFa aZORBO
         The Observer              individuals who are long-
                                   time volunteers. Youth recip-

   When Rena Wang told her         ients are under 24 and have
friends she had been nomi-         volunteered for at least two
nated for a volunteer award,       consecutive years.

their first question was “What        “Community is all about
are you wearing?”                  giving back, and the Scarbor-
   She remembered asking,          ough area has a tremendous
“Don’t you want to know            contingent of youth that were
what award I got?” but her         recognized,” said Colleen
friends were more interested       Moran, the MC.                                                                                                                             MOnICa ValenCIa
in her fashion.                                                                                                                                                                    The Observer
   Not that the Grade 11 stu-              Giving back
dent really minded. She said                                                                                                                                                 Residents in the Kingston-
her reason for volunteering           Also awarded on March 31                                                                                                            Galloway area who want to
was not to get an award, but       was Sybil Mitchell, who said                                                                                                           improve their communities
to help.                           volunteering at the Victori-                                                                                                           can now hook up with local
   She was nominated by the        an Order of Nurses (VON),                                                                                                              organizations at the new cen-
Scarborough branch of the          which nominated her, is just                                                                                                           tre, The Point, to get help.
Hong Fook Mental Health            her way of giving back to the                                                                                                             “They can come together
Association, where she helps       organization that helped her                                                                                                           and be empowered as they
at events and mentors other        ailing mother in her time of                                                                                                           make a difference in their
youth.                             need.                                                                                                                                  community,” Ward 43 coun-
                                      “My mother had a VON                                                                         GeSIlayeFa aZORBO/The Observer         cillor Paul Ainslie said.
           Enjoys it               worker when she was termi-       David Muthurajah, 18, and Sele Akioyamen, 15, of Mary Ward Catholic Secondary                            The Point opened on
                                   nally ill and I liked what she   School sang the national anthem to kick off the volunteer awards on March 31.                         March 23, bringing together
   “I don’t think it affects       was doing for my mum. So I                                                                                                             The United Way, East Scar-
me,” she said. “It’s a little      just joined up with the same     family member.                    received 20- and 25-year vol-       a fulfillment,” said Jimenez.   borough Storefront, Residents
boost on the way but, no mat-      organization.”                      “I have a nephew who’s         unteer awards for their ser-        “If we can be of service it’s   Rising, and U of T Scarbor-
ter what, I’ll always be vol-         She didn’t expect the         mentally challenged. Some         vice to the Scouts.                 good to help.”                  ough.
unteering because it’s what I      award but said it felt good      people volunteered with my            Clarita Ariz and Erlinda           In addition, Scarborough        “The partnership will help
enjoy doing.”                      to be recognized by both         nephew — I wanted to return       Jimenez were nominated by           MPPs Khalil Ramal, Gerry        to break down a lot of barriers
   The Ontario Volunteer Ser-      VON and the province. Del-       back the good things they do      Living Waters Residence,            Phillips, Helena Jaczek and     between community groups
vice Awards were started by        fina Laranang was also drawn     for my nephew.” Chris Mac-           “I think it’s not so much        Wayne Arthurs were also in      and residents,” Ainslie said.
the Ministry of Citizenship        into volunteering through a      Donald and wife Dena Rogers       an accomplishment, more of          attendance.                        The Point will serve as
                                                                                                                                                                          a meeting place where lo-

Riders receive TTC bus-tracking system
                                                                                                                                                                          cal groups can listen to the
                                                                                                                                                                          concerns of the residents.
                                                                                                                                                                          By working together, Ainslie
                                                                                                                                                                          says, they can better under-
                                                                                                                                                                          stand the neighbourhood’s
                                                                                                                                                                          issues and propose practical
   Matthew alleyne
         The Observer
                                                                                                                                                                                   Get funding
    A new TTC project will
answer the question on every                                                                                                                                                 “Instead of having two dif-
user’s mind: When will my                                                                                                                                                 ferent agencies asking for the
ride get here?                                                                                                                                                            same funding, they can now
    But some Scarborough                                                                                                                                                  unite and get funding for the
riders are also wondering                                                                                                                                                 same program,” Ainslie said.
when that system will actu-                                                                                                                                               “Governmental and private
ally get here.                                                                                                                                                            groups can collaborate and
    “It isn’t people downtown                                                                                                                                             get done a lot more.”
who have access to subways                                                                                                                                                   The centre, at 4117 Law-
and street cars who need this                                                                                                                                             rence Ave. East, has a class-
service,” resident Michael                                                                                                                                                room, a meeting room, library
Thorpe said.                                                                                                                                                              resources and offices.
    “It’s us in the suburbs try-                                                                                                                                             The Kingston-Galloway
ing to get to work and school                                                                                                                                             neighbourhood was identified
who need to know how long                                                                                                                                                 by United Way as one of the
we are going to be left strand-                                                                                                                                           13 priority neighbourhoods in
ed on the side of the road                                                                                                                                                Toronto. It’s a transit-based
waiting for a bus.”                                                                                                                                                       neighbourhood with a large
    On Dec. 15 the TTC                                                                                                                                                    population of newcomers and
launched Next Vehicle Arriv-                                                                                                                                              a low employment rate.
als (NVA) services downtown                                                                                                                                                  In 2005, United Way start-
on the 510 Spadina streetcar                                                                                                                                              ed an initiative called Action
line, with digital displays at                                                                                                                                            for Neighbourhood Change
both Union and Spadina sta-                                                                                                                                               to develop priority neigh-
tions.                                                                                                                                 Matthew alleyne/The Observer       bourhoods. Through the ANC
    It gives riders real-time                                                                                                                                             program, United Way funds
                                   Next Vehicle announcement at Spadina station is one of the two signs for the TTC system, informing commuters
information on when the next                                                                                                                                              local agencies that deliver
                                   when their ride will arrive. Other stations still wonder if they will be next to receive bus tracking signs.
street car is due to arrive.                                                                                                                                              services and organize com-
    NVA uses global position-      with the 510 Spadina, ex-            But to date the only route    lagged behind,” says Kevin          to be released this summer.     munity events.
ing satellite technology inside    panding to downtown street-      with this service remains the     Branigan, co-creator of myt-            “Trip planning and GPS         “Our main focus for the
the vehicles to relay to digital   cars and subway stations, and    510 Spadina. “The project is                              aren’t new innovations,”        first three months is to talk to
displays en route its current      then to suburban areas like      still ongoing,” says Danny            “It has not been the most       Branigan says.                  people and draw their ideas as
position.                          Scarborough toward the end       Nicholson, TTC media rela-        progressive when it comes to            “VIVA in York Region has    we do a study of the commu-
    It then approximates the       of the year, according to the    tions.                            technology.”                        used them for years. Riders     nity,” ANC representative Iain
vehicle’s arrival at a particu-    TTC press release.                   “There is still no date yet       Branigan’s site is inde-        just want to know if they are   Duncan said. “Nobody knows
lar stop.                             It will then be installed     for the system to be imple-       pendent of the TTC.                 able to grab a double-double    better what the problems and
    The $5.2-million system        with new street furniture and    mented in Scarborough.”               The long-awaited official       and come back out in time for   the solutions are than the resi-
was to roll out in early 2009      bus shelters.                        “The TTC has always           TTC version of the site is due      their bus.”                     dents themselves.”

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