By Kelsey Mohammed and Michelle Ramos
Humber College Alumni, Amber Morley, is running for a seat in city council with hopes to represent Ward 3; where she was born, raised and still currently resides. The Etobicoke-Lakeshore community has seen a large rise of development over the last five years, according to Morley. She explains that the Ward doesn’t necessarily have the infrastructure to support these new developments.
“If we’re building buildings and giving tax breaks to developers, and cutting local bus services, we’re currently seeing where the priorities of our current representatives are. They’re not in line with the people’s needs” says Morley.
Senior voters, in the ward, have voiced their concerns about retirement, pensions, and healthcare.
Senior Etobicoke resident, Pat, entered Morley’s office Oct 10 exclaiming “I’m interested in what she’s going to do for seniors?”
Morley says she will look after seniors if elected “I’m keen in making sure we take care of folks who’ve built the city for us, who’ve done their work. It’s our time to step up and make sure we’re protecting those investments” she says.
Although healthcare is a provincial matter, Morley believes that city council representatives could still be doing more “…this is why we need stronger leaders at the municipal level, so we have community centers and health clinics and I know Toronto Public Health offers dental support for seniors.”
After a full day talking with residents, Morley then attended Etobicoke-Lakeshore’s All Council Meeting where more residents posed questions about the community to candidates.
Another senior resident, Thomas (who wouldn’t provide his last name), had questions regarding the cleanliness of the Lakeshore area.
“I want to go out on Saturday mornings and travel from 13th Street to McDonald’s without seeing a single cigarette butt or water bottle,” he said.
Morley’s platform focuses heavily on getting the voices of the community heard and on the city council discussion table. Her response focused heavily on “being participants with the local BIA (business impact analysis) groups.”
“The street cleaning and a lot of the garbage receptacles and things that are available there are part of our discussions with the BIA’s” she added.
In the recent move made by Doug Ford’s provincial government, Ward 3 has become a combination of two Wards. Another promise by Morley’s campaign is to have a local constituency office; where she will have two assistants for the prior separated Wards, so she can reach out to everyone in her community.
Current seat holder Mark Grimes was absent for the town talk hosted at Humber’s Lakeshore campus on Oct. 10. Grimes has held the seat for this Ward for 15 years, and his opponents were quick to note his lack of presence at city council, or in the community. According to The Star, Grimes has missed 33% of city council votes this year.